I first made this last year and thoroughly enjoyed it so braved the thorns again this year. The summer drought has meant that there are not many wild rose hips this year.
The recipe is simple, rose hips, water and sugar. My recipe is from “The Complete Book of Preserving” by Marye Cameron-Smith and dates from the late 70’s but is one of my favourite, and now rather battered and falling apart, cookbooks.
These are the quantities given, but I usually scale it down, (thank goodness for Excel), to whatever quantity I’ve picked – usually I manage between 500 – 750 gm before I either run out of hips or get fed up picking them:
Bring 3 litres of water to the boil in a large pan. Wash and mince the hips – for ‘mince’ I substituted process in a food processor or liquidiser. Add to the water and bring back to the boil. Remove from the heat and allow to cool for about 15 min then strain through a jelly bag into a bowl.
Once drained, return the pulp to the pan and add another 1.5 litres of water. Bring to the boil then strain again through a clean jelly bag into a bowl.
Combine both lots of strained juice into a clean pan, bring to the boil and continue boiling until the juice is reduced to 1.5 litres. Then reduce the heat to low and add 1 kg of sugar and stir until dissolved. Once dissolved bring back to the boil and boil for 5 mins.
Pour into clean, hot bottles and they should then be heat processed for 20 mins at 88°C. I haven’t done the latter as I didn’t make much and am keeping them in the fridge.
One cup of hot rose hip syrup – not quite a red as last years as I added extra water and didn’t reduce it enough but delicious all the same.