.........enough to weigh down the trees and halt new, budding growth and awakenings for a little longer.
This afternoon I came across a broken limb of an old Pine tree. It has often provided me with pinecones and my kids used to enjoy prizing out the pine nuts, hitting them with a rock and nibbling their tiny treasures.
Very fiddly, I didn't get on too well.
So that's what I'm doing now. Simmering a new concoction. The house smells amazing; of mountain log cabins, Christmas trees, balsamic and aromatic, citrus but woody, fresh and clean. I am going to turn the heat off and let it infuse overnight.
I am following the recipe from this site;
www.pforster.ch (old folk recipes) for pine tips.
I used the needles, dried zest and some dried wild (Greek) thyme aswell.
Pine Tip/Needle Syrup
wild thyme (optional)
Put new pine tips in a large pan.
Cover with cold filtered water.
For every litre of water add one orange and one lemon (sliced).
Bring to boil and simmer for half an hour.
Cover with a clean tea towel and leave at least for four hours or overnight.
Squeeze and filter.
For every litre of liquid add one kg of sugar. Bring to the boil again.
Bottle in sterilised bottles while still quite hot.Once opened keep in the fridge. Better to keep unopened in the fridge aswell (for up to three months).
I will probably freeze mine.
Update - this is so easy and delicious, athough it is very sweet. I made two batches one with white sugar and one with brown sugar. The white sugar one looked much more inviting. I think I'll boil the brown one down to make a thick syrup to use on ice-cream, desserts etc. In the future, I'll probably make small quantities with less sugar and freeze it as less sugar will probably mean that it preserves for less time.
My son loved it and asked for more, he recognised the pine taste immediately, although I didn't tell him what it was. I didn't give him any more as I always like to introduce new ingredients slowly. Some people are allergic to pinenuts. The pine taste isn't very strong, more of an aftertaste. I imagine it would be very soothing for someone with a respiratory tract infection.