What to Do With Rose Hips

Rose Hip Tea
Rose Hip Syrup
Rose Hip Soup
Rose Hip Pudding

Rose hips, the seed pods left behind on rose bushes when the flowers have died and all the petals have fallen away, have a higher concentration of Vitamin C than just about any other plant. Roses are from the same botanical family as apples, and both the petals and hips are edible. Most varieties of roses produce rose hips, but hips from the Rugusa Rose are said to be best for eating. Rose hips can be used in jellies, sauces, soups and for seasoning. Or can steep a few in boiling water to make rose hip tea.

bunch of rose hips

bundle of rose hips from the Union Square Greenmarket, New York, N.Y., Oct. 23, 2009

Rose Hip Tea [top]

Steep 4-8 dried rose hips (more for smaller hips) in a cup of boiling water for 10-15 minutes. Quantity of hips will need to be doubled if you are using fresh hips.

Try this in tea, on pancakes or add some to apples in a sauce pan and make rose hip-flavored apple sauce.

Rose Hip Syrup [top]

4 cups rose hips
2 cups water
1 cup sugar

1. Wash rose hips thoroughly. Remove stems and flower remnants. Boil hips and water for 20 minutes in a covered saucepan. Strain through a jelly bag. Return clear juice to kettle. Add sugar, stir well and boil five minutes. Refrigerate until used.

Source: Cooking Alaskan, by Alaskans

Rose Hip Soup [top]

½ cup dried rose hips
2 to 4 tablespoons honey
1 to 3 tablespoons lemon juice or cider vinegar
1 tablespoon potato starch, cornstarch, or tapioca granules
6 tablespoons sour cream or yogurt, optional

1. Soak dried rose hips in a quart of water for a few minutes, then cook till soft. Mash with a fork and strain, reserving liquid. Add another cup of water to the pulp, heat to a boil, then strain. Combine the juice from both strainings, which will yield about one quart of juice.

2. Heat the rose hips juice, add honey and lemon juice or vinegar. Adjust amounts of honey and lemon juice or vinegar to produced the desired sweet-tart flavor.

3. Mix the starch or tapioca in enough cold water to moisten it, and stir into soup. Cook until the soup thickens slightly and clears. Float a spoon of sour cream or yogurt in each bowl of soup when it is served.

Rose Hip Pudding [top]

1. Make Rose Hip Soup (see above).

2. Add additional honey to taste, and increase the starch or tapioca to 5-6 tablespoons.

3. After it has thickened, pour the pudding into individual dishes or into a serving dish and place in refrigerator to cool.

Source: Adapted from Craft of the Country Cook from A-Z: Over 1000 Recipes and Food Ideas, by Pat Katz