Well, here we are in autumn and there are hedgerows bursting with fruit waiting to be picked and turned into something delicious. Elderberries are one such fruit and can be easily made into jam, which is not only tasty, but full of health benefits too.
They are high in fibre which is great for digestive health. High fibre levels also help to eliminate excess cholesterol, and high levels of potassium help to reduce blood pressure. Elderberries strengthen the immune system, helping to ward off flu as well as coughs, colds and sore throats by reducing inflammation and irritation of the respiratory system. Elderberries also protect against autoimmune disorders, and are good for your skin due to high levels of bioflavonoids and antioxidants, even having anti-ageing benefits. So, what’s not to like – give them a try!
Elderberries are found in bunches on the elder tree, from mid September onwards. Go for the darkest fruit you can find. Here is the elderberry jam recipe (it makes approximately 600g):
700g elderberries, stripped from the stalk, washed and drained thoroughly
Juice of 1/2 lemon
700g caster sugar
This elderberry jam is excellent on fresh, crusty bread and butter, warm crumpets, oatcakes, or spooned over Greek yoghurt or rice pudding. You can also add elderberries to pancakes, muffins, crumbles and fruit salads so get creative with your cooking!
And whilst on the subject of foraging for autumn fruits, here is a yummy recipe for Bramble Cheesecake Ice Cream – so easy and so good. Enjoy!
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