Rose hips contain lots of good stuff and though best nutritionally when made into a tincture or vinegar infusion, I do enjoy herbal syrups! These syrups may be poured over ice (much like a cordial), added to winter juice or tea, taken by the tablespoonful when the cold or flu is creeping your way.
When harvesting rose hips for this recipe, be certain to choose some slightly under-ripe fruits for natural pectin (aka thickener). Roughly estimate your harvest and add 1/4 of these not-quite-ready gems. They will help your case significantly!
And instead of using just rose hips, add mint! Peppermint, spearmint, regardless of variety, it has what is needed with a strong aroma and flavor! It can be harvested with or without the flower. If harvesting more than leaves, be certain take to the tips of plant, no further down than the 4th set of leaves as the tough stem will impart a bitter flavor to your syrup.
I love wild mint. Its lovely stuff really, with delicate lavender flowers that grow in a cluster around the plant’s stalk.
Rose Hip Mint Syrup
- 8 C wild rose hips
- 1 C lightly packed mint leaves (note: if using stalk, harvest tips only as tougher stock and render a bitter taste)
- 12 C water
- 1 C honey
- (optional) 3-4 cloves and/or 1 cinnamon stick
Directions: clean rose hips, removing stem and dried out blossom on end. Pop into a pot and cover with the water. Add spices if desired and simmer for 40 min. Add peppermint leaves and simmer for another 10 min. Strain through cloth and let drip for 4 hrs. Re-heat syrup and add honey. Pour into pint canning jars and water bath can according to altitude. Makes approx 2+ quarts syrup