‘It is a wise woman who picks the elderberry fruit for it is the fruit that holds many secrets. It stores the elixir of both health and youth. It keeps the soldier marching forth into battle. It makes the baby gurgle in the crib and children’s eyes shine like a thousand jewels.’
The elderberry has always been under estimated and yet it is a powerful tool in the medicine chest as it has many natural attributes. The main use that most are interested in is it’s power as an anti-viral food. It not only prevents colds and flu and other similar maladies but also helps the body to conquer any virus that it picks up.
The berries are gathered easily. The most difficult part is stripping them from their soft branch ends – this is best done manually. Wash the berries and then compote them with a little sugar. The result is a lovely soft compote, conserve or jam – highly nutritious and full of antiviral properties. Use it everywhere – spread it on bread or toast; cook it in a sponge pudding; dollop it on yoghurt or ice cream; serve it with custard; make it into tarts; pour some into semolina, tapioca, sago or rice pudding; put it into steamed puddings; spread it onto Swiss rolls, and so on …. It offers so much natural protection and the fruits grow wild and so they are free. Enjoy!