Sunday, October 27, 2013

Elderberry Cough Syrup and Tincture (How we make it)

Since we started our 'fight against the badies' last May I have gone from buying  Sambucol Black Elderberry Extract to making our own.
My reason for this was it was nearly $18 for 120 ml and that tends to go very fast when using it on a household the size of ours.

From my local Health Food Shop I was able to get 1/2 a kilo of dried Elderberry for $40.
Since then I have made the recipe below three times as well as a tincture (also below) and still have berries left.

I think I get about 800ml from each recipe and so I think that is a lot better deal than I was getting.
I might be able to get a little more but I sometimes forget to monitor the reducing part of the recipe and so let it reduce a little too much.
Now before I tell you how I made it I want to explain just a little about both the syrup and the tincture-

"Because of Elderberries effects on the body, they are used medicinally for colds, fevers, respiratory ailments, arthritis, blood cleansing, sore throats, hoarseness, laryngitis and it's high in Vitamin C so it may be taken regularly for immune health.
Elderberry can be made into wine, pies, tinctures and syrups.
Tinctures and syrups are usually used medicinally. 
The difference between a tincture and a syrup is this: Syrups are made with honey, water and other medicinal spices/herbs such as ginger, clove and cinnamon.
These additional herbs and spices are used for flavor but also have a circulatory and protective benefit to the body.
Elderberry syrups are delicious for children but are perishable, only lasting in the refrigerator about 3 months at the most.
Tinctures are made without honey or water. And since they are made with vodka as the base, they last much longer than elderberry syrup.
Elderberry Tinctures are said to last at least 3 years but I think if they are stored in glass bottles and not exposed to light or heat, they may last even longer than that!" I am not sure where I got this from a while ago but it sums it up nicely.

ELDERBERRY SYRUP-
So how do I make it?
There are many recipes around the Internet but this is the one that I like to make
I can vary it as I want based on what ingredients I may or may not have.
Into a pot place
3 1/2 cups of water
2/3 cup of dried black elderberries
2 tablespoons of dried ginger
1 teaspoon of cinnamon powder
1 teaspoon of  whole cloves
3/4 cup of frozen blueberries (this could be optional)
In fact the spices could all be optional if you did not have them but they each have additional medicinal value to the syrup so I add them
Bring to the boil and then reduce heat  and simmer for about 45 mins until the mixture has reduced in quantity
Then using a strainer strain the liquid through into another bowl.
Squeeze the last bit of liquid through to get the most of your syrup

If you are worried about gritty bits you can then double strain it through some muslin.
When It has cooled to room temperature you then add 1 cup of raw honey to the mixture.
 You will need to stir for a while to mix it through thoroughly.
Poor into your bottle and use as needed. Date it so you know when you made it and how long it should last
It does need to be kept in the fridge and used up within a couple of months or so.
Make sure you shake it each time to ensure the honey stays mixed through.

Dosage- I give our little kids about 10ml and adults 20ml
I give it at least 3 times a day but it can be given every 2-4 hours for the first day at  the onset of a cold.
Then followed the next day and beyond by same amount every 3-4 hours
I don't just because we will go through it so fast again
ELDERBERRY TINCTURE-
You will need:
Dried or fresh elderberries
water if you use dries berries
80-100% proof vodka (very hard to find in Australia) but it needs to be the high alcohol content for medicinal purposes
Jar -mine is about a 4 cup jar
Fill the jar about a third full of Elderberries
Just cover the dried berries with a filtered water
Then fill the rest of the jar up with the vodka
I'd say it is one cup elderberry to three cup vodka

Cover and shake
Store in a dark place for approx 3-6 months shake it every couple of days or so

Strain as you would for the syrup and put into amber coloured little bottles. Date again as you would the syrup for your own information
This keeps almost indefinitely and is great to have ready available at all times unlike the syrup which has a limited shelf life

Dosage- 1-2 tablespoons daily for prevention and up to 4 times daily at the first show of cold/flu symptoms.
For children half this and put it into a cup of hot drink with a little raw honey to dissolve the alcohol content   and make it a little sweeter and thus more palatable

Blessings to you and your homes,
 

1 comment:

Amy Caroline said...

I know it is for the badies, but it looks yummy!

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