Tuesday, 22 December 2015

Pining ...

As promised, here is another way to 'eat' a pine tree.

The first post is here if you missed it :

The pine tree is evergreen so there should never be any shortage of pine needles.  This recipe is for Pine needle syrup - made in a similar way to Rosehip syrup but containing much more vitamin C.

Here is the latest batch I made, kept in the fridge will last a long time.  My Rosehip syrup is coming to an end now, I didn't make enough this year being busy with other stuff, so this is an excellent substitute.  I use this to pour over cereal, home made yoghurt, pies etc.,
So .... gather your pine needles and strip them off the branch/twig.
Keep the twigs to dry, they make excellent fire starters to a woodburner or BBQ.
Roughly measure the needles in a jug, accuracy isn't important in recipes like this.
Add water, enough to cover and bring to a rolling boil.
Allow to boil (gently) for about 10 minutes, then strain off the liquid.
At this stage, you can add more water to the needles, bring to a boil again and strain and use that liquid too.  I put around 6 ozs of sugar into this mix (I don't have a sweet tooth) but this is your choice.  Bring to a fast boil for around 10 minutes.  Allow to cool and decant into bottles - and that's it.  A very frugal 'free' syrup which is very good for you.
Note:  I'm sure you are all familiar with the process, but bear in mind the more liquid you have, the more 'runny' the syrup will be - the choice is yours.
As usual, a reminder when using wild edible foods:
NOTE:  Before starting to eat any wild food, be it leaves, roots, flowers or trees, DO YOUR OWN RESEARCH - the saying in 'survivalist circles' is 'If you're not sure it is edible - leave it well alone'
There are many blogs/sites and Youtube videos that will help you with recognition

The Pine Tree as I said can be used in many ways, and the only negative 'I know of' is that it is not safe for pregnant women to consume.

I can't stress enough to 'do your own research'.  Check on several sites/videos/books etc., before consuming any wild food.  Follow this advice and you should be fine.
Whilst collecting the needles for this syrup, I found a pile of pears that had fallen from a huge wild pear tree, and this is the haul I got.
These have now been processed into pear pies and tarts, frozen pears, dried pears and pear syrup - now that's what I call frugal.
This post will be added to the 'Nature Will Provide' page.

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