recipes/experiences with hawthorn berries?

topic posted Thu, August 31, 2006 - 5:20 PM by  Unsubscribed
i'm thinking of harvesting some this season.
has anyone picked and indulged?
ideas what to do with them?
did it taste good?

i know they are full of vitamin c and especially good for heart/circulatory system.
i also take haw flakes with my chinese herbal teas which can be pretty gross in taste - so the haw (hawthorn) makes it go down nice.
...but i've never tried the wild berries.

thaks! :-)

ps - blackberries are in season in bc, i've never seen so many before. must be all the sun we've been having...sweet!
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  • Unsu...

    I grew up in western Virginia, and we used to pick them in the fall just to munch on during our walks. They taste good plain, similar to a raisin but less sweet. However, they do have really large seeds in them, so don't bite down too hard!
    • hi steph,
      strikes me that where theres berry eaters theres likely to be some good recipees floating around. Could you catch hold of some and post them on the site? Look forward to your response.
      • Unsu...

        > strikes me that where theres berry eaters theres likely to be some good recipees floating around. Could you catch hold of some and post them on the site? Look forward to your response.

        I just noticed this, sorry for the delay.

        Nope, we never made anything with them, just munched a handful on our walks, that's it. I think making something with them would be a bit challenging because of the large seed. (When you're walking and munching, you can just spit them out.) Maybe a jelly would work, though, where you cook them down and then strain, essentially just to get the juice.

        Sorry I can't help you out with recipes.
  • I take hawthorn on occasion for my heart. Because I use it as a medicine, I don't eat the berries casually. I would advise caution since they do have an action on the heart. I tend to have an irregular rhythm and have needed hawthorne for smoothing and regulating the heart's action.
  • Hawthorn berries are a spectacular tonic for the cardiovascular system. If you find a lot of them and don't know what to do with them, I recommend making an extract from them. I only have the dried version available to me and they are DIFFICULT to work with. An extract will keep almost indefinitely. If they taste like raisins, why not try sneaking them into pies or preserves?

    As far as eating fresh berries, I wouldn't worry about eating too many. They have a tonifying effect rather than a stimulating one. In other words, they work over time. There has been a lot research done on them and I've never read of any side effects associated with it.
    • yes please
      tell us how to make an extract
      they are going offff!
      in my area
      mom and dad both have high bloodpressure
      does anyone know if the interfere with bloodpressure meds?
      • I've made a glycerite tincture with the fresh berries that works very nicely taken in a cup of tea or straight on the tongue. Just chop or crush the berries, place them in a mason jar and cover with organic glycerin. Let steep for a month, strain and bottle. Glycerites keep pretty well for about a year.
        • >does anyone know if the interfere with bloodpressure meds?

          Yes they can. I've seen after about 2 wks, w/ hawthorn frt. extract that someone on a beta blocker had their bp drop dramatically and had to have their script adjusted. One of the most dramatic herb/drug interactions I've seen. I've also read that it can potentiate digitalis products, other high bp meds and nitrates. Some things to watch out for ... .
  • you could make a tincture out of them using brandy (a traditional folk method). . .
    • hi angie, do you have the recipee for tincture using the berries? And if used medicinally, at what dosage?

      i found this recipee for Hawthorne Brandy Liquer, that uses the blossom when in full scent. It says the srong almond-scented May blossom makes a fine liquer.
      Have not tried it as only just dicovered it. Sounds good though,- looking forward to the spring! Oh, the heady month of May!
      Cut Hawthorne flowers using scissors and taking the flower heads only. Pack flowers into wide necked bottle, shake down loosely, but do notpress or bruise flowers.
      Shake a little fine sugar (two tablespoons to a pint) over the flowers, fill up with brandy and cork tightly. Put bottle into full sunshine untill warmed through; then store in a warm, dark cupboard.
      During first few weeks, shake bottle gently so that sugar is dissolved and evenly distributed. After that stage let it stand unmoved for at least three months. Decant the liquer gently into a small bottle and cork securely.
  • hi,
    i happened upon this site whilst surfing the net, trying to locate any recipees using hawthorn, especially the berries. It seems that there aren't many around! My cousin tells me that as a child out walking in woodland, he used to eat the raw berries sandwiched between the leaves. Very tasty, says he, have yet to try! Anyway, i found this recipee for hawthorn jelly in one of my books, It is a traditional Northumberland (UK) recipee called Haw Jelly.
    Gather 3lb of ripe red haws, strigged from stalks. Wash fruit well and place in pan with 3 pints boiling water. Simmer fruit for one hour, mashing fruit down often. Pour into jelly bag (or muslin cloth, leave to strain overnight.
    Next morning, measure juice aand return to pan adding 1lb sugar and strained juice of one lemon to each pint of juice. Boil untill jelly is well set when tested.
    Have still to try this recipee, so can't tell you how it tastes yet - but i've been eyeing those berries! so will let you know when i've made some!

    P. S. Sorry about the English measures, 1lb is approx 425 grams, and there are 2.2 pints to a litre. Good luck.

    P.SS. Have now joined your tribe - look out for more hedgerow recipees!
    • A postscript on the above! Just picked my son up from school, rounded the corner and there they all were - lining the hedgerow - the precious haw berries, bright and red as jewels, saying 'taste me...dare you!' Had to try! Hmm, soft and pulpy with a slight apple flavour.... and a very hard pip! Obviously when making the Hawthorne Sandwiches my cousin mentioned - spread the pulp (minus the pip) on to the fresh leaves! Its got to be good for you. Its amazing what we don't eat because we've never been told we can.
      Final recipee for today - another spring one- this time using the fresh buds.

      Hawthorne Suet Roll - this one is from the Leicestershire/ Nottinghamshire border UK.

      Make a fine and light suet crust, season well with salt and pepper. Roll out into a long thin rectangle. Cover surface with green Hawthorne buds or the fresh young leaves. Pat down lightly. Cut a rasher of bacon into fine strips and lay across buds. Moisten edges of crust and roll up tightly sealing edgea as you go. Tie in a floured cloth and boil or steam for at least an hour. Unroll on to a hot plate, cut and serve in thick slices with gravy. Yum, Yum!
      • Ok, so I have to ask. I've used the berries and heard of using the flowers, but what do the leaves taste like? Anybody know how the phytochemical profile of the berries compares to flowers and to leaves?

        Personally, I use solid extract of hawthorn, which is like a really thick, glycerine-based syrup. When I first started using hawthorn berry solid extract I was using it every day, usually twice a day, and I was using quite a lot of it (1/2 a tsp or more at a time) (Before I had any experience with hawthorn berry, I also avoided using it because I feared it's effects, even positive ones, on the heart.) Now after about 6 months of use, I have backed off to about one dose a day, but not every day.

        Incidentally, I don't take hawthorn for it's effect on the cardiovascular system, but because in addition to the heart (muscle), hawthorn has a profound effect on the heart (spirit). It is a mood elevator and a relaxant . It can calm the "I've-drunk-too-much-coffee" jitters instantly, too.

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