It’s elderberry season once again, that wonderful fruit which was the very first herb that I worked with, over 15 years ago when I first began the initial tentative steps on this long, strange path I find myself walking. Recently I’ve made up the first large batch of spiced elderberry syrup for the winter, and a couple of days ago, I brewed up the first small jar of elderberry rob.
Now comes the messy part – for this you need a jelly bag, a strong grip and a large dish with a colander sitting in the top of it. Put all your elderberries and juice into the jelly bag, allow to cool, then gather in the sides and squeeze out as much juice as you possibly can. This is a gloriously messy business, and, as elderberries can stain rather effectively, not a job to be undertaken when wearing clothes you don’t want to get splodged with elderberry juice.
This elderberry rob is sugar free – the only ingredients you have added is a little spice to taste. No water or sugar has been added in. I find that this keeps perfectly well in the fridge for surprisingly long periods of time, and is richly tasty. Stir it into a cup of boiling water for a vitamin C boost, or even just have a tiny bit straight off the end of the spoon if you want. Because I am personally not wildly keen on having large amounts of sugar in my diet, this is my perferred recipe these days. I’ll pop up my elderberry syrup recipe in the very near future as well though!