Recipe: rosehip syrup

Deep red rosehips

We were out on our bikes at the weekend and I spotted lots of rosehips growing along one of the lanes. They were plump, deep red in colour and ready for picking. My arms and legs got chewed by brambles and stinging nettles but I managed to pick enough for a couple of jars of rosehip syrup. Seeing them jogged the memory of making rosehip syrup with Scotts Mum a few years ago (also the first time I tried it). Here’s how you can make your own:

Ingredients

  • 275g granulated sugar
  • 400ml water
  • 400g rosehips

Makes approx 500ml.

How to make rosehip syrup

1. Roughly chop the rosehips

The quickest way to do this is using a food processor. I chopped mine by hand and also made sure I removed any soft or mouldy looking bits which could cause it to spoil.

Chopped rosehips

2. Boil the rosehips

Add the chopped rosehips and water to a pan. Bring to the boil and simmer for 15 minutes.

3. Drain through muslin

Double up a piece of muslin and place inside a colander – it will catch the pulp and most importantly the tiny hairs. Drain the rosehips through the muslin. Once cooled a little, squeeze out any juice that hasn’t drained through.

Straining rosehip syrup

The drained liquid should look like this. Bright, orangey and slightly silky.

Boiled rosehips

4. Return to pan & add sugar

Pour the drained liquid back into the pan and add the sugar. Heat slowly until the sugar dissolves and then boil for 2-3 minutes. You’ll notice the liquid become a brighter shade of orange and turn semi transparent.

5. Bottle and seal

Pour into sterilised bottles straight away and seal. I hadn’t planned to make rosehip syrup that day so I only had jam jars to pour mine into.

Rosehip syrup in jar

It’s delicious! Sweet, fresh and syrupy. You can pour it onto porridge, fruit, ice cream, pancakes, waffles, cereal and use it to sweeten herbal teas that smell amazing but taste like dish water.

Rosehip on a spoon

Rosehip syrup dribbling off spoon

Rosehips contain lots of vitamin C (50% more than the same amount of citrus fruit) so you could just use it as a vitamin boost during cold and flu season if you wanted to.

“During World War II, the people of Britain were encouraged through letters to The Times newspaper, articles in the British Medical Journal, and pamphlets produced by Claire Loewenfeld, a dietitian working for Great Ormond Street Hospital for Sick Children, to gather wild-grown rose hips to make a vitamin C syrup for children. This advice arose because German submarines were sinking commercial ships, making it difficult to import citrus fruits.”

Wikipedia, Rosehip

If you spot some rosehips, why not try making your own? It’s really easy and only takes about 30 minutes from chopping board to bottle. As with anything worth foraging, your hands will get stung by thorns and brambles but it’s all worth it when you taste what you’ve made.

16 Comments

  1. There’s stacks of rose hips on the school walk! I keep looking at them thinking they could be made into something delicious. I guess I’ve always been a bit worried in case they are not the right type of rose hips. Is there a right or wrong type?

    • Oooh, lucky you! 🙂 Before I made my syrup I looked up edible and inedible rosehips – apparently all are edible, but some taste nicer than others with ‘Dog Rose’ hips having the best flavour. The ones I picked smelt really appley, lovely!

    • I’d not heard of it until a few years ago. You’ll be able to make lots of syrup then 🙂

  2. Ooooh, thanks for the recipe. I’ve got a load of glorious looking hips on my garden hedge and have been wondering about what to do with them. Now I know!

    And I *totally* hear you on the herbal teas that smell delicious but taste of nothing…

    • I’ve seen people dry rosehips aswell, so if you have too many for syrup that could be a good fall back.

  3. gorgeous photos! we collected up rosehips and made syrup last year, but I have to say I just didn’t get on with the taste! It’s such a shame as it’s so beautiful to look at! x

    • That’s a shame Charmaine. I can see why it wouldn’t be to everyones taste though.

    • Thank you Tina 🙂 I hope you like your syrup. I’m waiting for a cold day so I can make some porridge to put mine on.

  4. Your rosehip syrup looks delicious. I keep meaning to pick some rosehips as there’s so many about but have been sidetracked by blackberries. Now we’re hitting October it may be time to make rosehip syrup.

    • Yes, so many blackberries this year! I think you can pick rosehips into October so you’ve still got some time left.

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