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Rose Hips are a Great Source of Vitamin C

 width= At the end of the summer, and into the fall, roses left to their own devices will often develop rose hips. Rose hips have long been valued for their vitamin C and vitamin A content - they are also rich in antioxidants. Below you will find some natural remedies for the snuffles and sneezes that often come with the colder weather of the winter, using rose hips.

Rose hip vinegar

You can use this vinegar as a regular vinegar or to make a soothing drink for those colds and sore throats. Ingredients Method
  • Wash the hips thoroughly, preparing by removing the stalk end and bottom (topping and tailing) before scoring carefully with a knife.
  • Half fill a glass jar with the rose hips and pour over the cider vinegar to just below the brim before replacing the lid and shaking. Leave in a prominent place so that you will be reminded to shake it daily for three to four weeks.
  • Strain through a muslin-lined sieve and pour into clean labelled jars to store. You will notice its beautiful red color. The hips left in the sieve can be added to your compost.
  • To use, add a teaspoon of rose hip vinegar to a cup of hot water with a teaspoon of raw honey to drink.
  • Mix 1/2 rose hip vinegar with 2/3 olive oil, seasoning with salt and pepper, for a winter salad dressing.
For a sore throat gargle, add a teaspoon of the rose hip vinegar to warm water and gargle as often as necessary.    width=

You can also dry rose hips for tea and cooking

Here is what you need to do...
  • Pick a supply of rose hips, wash thoroughly and spread on a towel to dry.
  • Top and tail each rose hip before cutting in half and carefully scraping out the seeds. A word of warning - avoid touching your eyes or sensitive areas and wash your hands afterwards.
  • Spread on drying racks or trays lined with clean tea towels, leaving somewhere airy and warm to dry. Check every few days. Drying can take several weeks. The rose hips are dry when they are hard, wrinkled and a dark color. They will make a rustling sound when moved!
  • Store in clean jars until needed.
  • To make tea, add 1 teaspoon of the dried hips (per cup) into a teapot or jug, pouring over boiling water and leaving to infuse for seven to ten minutes. Strain into cups or mugs, serving with honey and/or a slice of lemon. For extra flavor, add a cinnamon stick and some slices of fresh ginger to the teapot first.
You can add the dried rose hips to soups, chutneys, syrups and more for extra flavor and of course the nutrients they provide.    width=