From my ‘Secret Garden’ this week I gathered over a kilo of rather plump n’ lush juicy Rose Hips. These I have discovered are the Rosa Villosa, the Apple Rose a sub species of the Wild Dog Rose. Rose hips have more than 20 times vitimin C than oranges.
The oldies amongst us remember the ‘Delrosa’ brand that was brought in during the war years. Delrosa was manufactured to replace our vitimin C as oranges were to be an early casualty of the second world war. The Ministry of Food turned to the nations school children to collect the domestic alternative. By 1945 amounts of 450 tons or so were gathered each autumn to make into syrup; collectors were paid 3d a pound. Rose Hip syrup was rationed and provided to mothers for their children through the war years and for some time afterwards.
Here are my efforts, It is very easy to make though a little time consuming as all good things are!
Wash and strain the rose hips ….
Cut off their hairy bottoms!
Chop them up roughly
Tip into a large saucepan of boiling water and bring back to the boil, remove from heat, cover and leave to infuse for 30 minutes, stirring from time to time….
Strain the mixture through muslin over a colander
Set the strained juice aside and transfer the pulp back into the saucepan with another litre of boiling water. Bring to boil, remove from heat infuse for another 3o minutes and strain as before.
Discard the pulp and combine the two lots of strained juice in a clean pan
Bring to the boil and boil until reduced by half. Remove from heat. Add the sugar and stir until dissolved. Pour into warmed sterilsed jars and seal.
The rather satisfying golden amber nectar, reminiscent of honey. I can honestly say it is delicious and will be taking some each day by the spoonful or in my morning smoothies.
Here are my rose hip picking companions, Charlie and Erin, who were rather bored by all the picking and couldn’t understand why we were not playing instead. Charlie say’s it all, bless him x
Have a go yourselves, here’s the recipe – it’s good to go back sometimes 🙂
- 1kg rosehips, washed and roughly chopped
- 1kg caster sugar
- A jelly bag, or some clean muslin and a colander
- Wash and roughly chop 1kg of rosehips. Add to 2 litres of boiling water in a large pan. Bring back to the boil, then remove from the heat, cover and leave to infuse for half an hour.
- Strain through a jelly bag or colander lined with a clean tea towel or a couple of layers of muslin. Leave suspended over a large bowl until all the juice drips through.
- Transfer the rosehip pulp back to the saucepan with another litre of boiling water. Bring to the boil, remove from the heat, infuse for another half an hour and strain as before. Discard the pulp and combine the two lots of strained juice in a clean pan. Bring to the boil and boil until the volume has decreased by half. Remove from the heat.
- Add the sugar and stir until dissolved. Return to the stove, bring to the boil and boil hard for 5 minutes.
- Pour into warmed sterilised jars or bottles and seal.