Douglas County Conservation District


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Wild Rose (Woods Rose) Recipes

Blossoms: June
Ripens:  September

The fruit of the wild rose has the most vitamin C of all wild fruits.  The farther north the rose hips are harvested, the richer they are in this essential vitamin.  The hips turn to a lustrous red or orange when ripe and may be either globular or elliptical in shape.  Try to gather your hips in the wild, away from dusty roads just before the first frost is expected, though they can still be used even after they are frosted and soft.

Rose Petal Jelly

1 cup fresh, fragrant, unsprayed rose petals
Juice of one lemon
2 1/2 cups sugar
1 package powdered pectin
1 1/2 cups water

Rose petals are best gathered in the morning.  Cut off the white base on each clump of petals as it adds bitterness.

Put petals, lemon juice, and 3/4 cup water in blender and blend until smooth.  Gradually add sugar.  Put mixture in sauce pan and stir in pectin, 3/4 cup water and boil the mixture hard for one minute, stirring constantly.  Put it all back in the cleaned blender and stir until smooth.  Pour into hot, sterile jars leaving 1/4- inch head space.  Process 10 minutes in a boiling water bath, or freeze.

Rose Hip Juice

To prepare rose hip juice for use in many things, just snap the stems and tails off the rose hips and cook in enough water to almost cover them.  Cook until well softened.  Put through a sieve.  Cook again in less water and again put through a sieve.  Repeat once more.  Then discard remaining seeds and skins and drain the rest overnight through a jelly bag or several layers of cheesecloth. 

The juice can be made into syrup or just stored in the refrigerator in a covered jar, to use from time to time in various recipes that would benefit from the addition of vitamin C.  The pulp can be used in jam or jelly  to augment the quantity where you are a bit short and to add vitamin C.

Use rose hip juice in any syrup, jam or jelly in place of water - at least partly.  It doesn't have much taste, so it can be used in many different things to add that all-important vitamin C.

One use for the pulp is to spread it thinly on cookie sheets and dry it in a low oven, with the oven door slightly open to allow moisture to escape.  When completely dry, break the sheet of puree into smaller pieces and pulverize with a rolling pin.  The resulting powder is delicious sprinkled on cereal or beverages, or used in place of a little flour in many recipes.

Candied Rose Hips

Snap off the stems and tail of the wild rose hips you have collected.  Discard any imperfect ones.  Insects like rose hips too, so sort them with care.  Split the hips open.  With a teaspoon turned over, force the seeds out of the hips.  Scrape out any extraneous membrane from the inside.  Cover with cold water in a saucepan and bring to the boiling point.  Reduce the heat and simmer slowly for 10 minutes.  Drain well.

Cook to the boiling point 1 cup sugar, 1/2 cup water, and 1 or 2 pieces of crystallized ginger.  Add the drained rose hip pieces (not more than a cupful at a time).  Cook slowly until the hips just begin to appear translucent.  Using a skimmer, remove the hips from the syrup and spread them on a platter to cool.  If you have more hips, cook them in the same way until all are cooked, but never add more than a cupful at a time.

When cool, roll the hips in granulated sugar and spread thinly on waxed paper to dry.  These make a healthful snack for the kids.  They should be stored in an airtight, childproof glass container.

Rose Hip Tea

Grind approximately 3-4 cups of rose hips.  Boil in 2-3 cups of water for 20 minutes.  Strain the liquid to remove the pulp.  It's delicious hot or cold.

Rose Hip Candy

Gather rose hips, grind into a paste, mix with butter, and add sugar to sweeten.  Shape into balls, put a stick into the balls, and roast them over hot coals and enjoy them as a treat on your camping trips.

Rose Hip Syrup

3 pounds rose hips (ripe)
1 cup honey

Wash hips, remove stems and ends.  Use a stainless steel or enamel saucepan.  Simmer 15 minutes or until tender.  Mash with a wooden spoon.  Simmer another 8 minutes.

Pour into several layers cheesecloth and allow to drip over night into ceramic bowl.  Squeeze out leftovers.  Return juice to saucepan, add honey, and blend well.  Bring to boil; boil for 1 minute.  Pour into jars and seal.  Process in hot water bath for 15 minutes at 5,000 feet.

Rose Hip and Rhubarb Jam

Use slightly under-ripe rose hips.  Cut in half and remove seeds with tip of knife.

1 cup rose hips
1 cup water
4 cups diced rhubarb
1/2 teaspoon salt

Boil rapidly 2 minutes and add:
2 cups sugar
1 tablespoon grated lemon rind

Boil rapidly 2 minutes. Seal in sterilized jars.  Process in hot water bath for 15 minutes at 5,000 feet.