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Rowan Berries.

Discussion in 'Lovely Grub' started by crosslandkelly, Sep 15, 2019.

  1. Toddy

    Toddy Mod
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    Before wasting anything else on it, how about trying to mix a little of it with something like straight Ribena first ? if that improves it enough to be drinkable, then maybe soaking damsons or some of the present glut of brambles and some sugar in it might save it ?

    M
     
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  2. Woody girl

    Woody girl Full Member

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    I once tried to make rowen berry wine. It was in the brewing bucket on the kitchen floor with a large tea towel on the top waiting to be put into demijons later that afternoon. I needed to wash the kitchen floor so I popped it outside while I did that. As I was cleaning I heard a loud noise from outside which didn't sound good. I popped my head outeide to see the cat climbing out of the bucket, swearing loudly and a rather pretty shade of peachy pink!.
    Needless to say the rowen wine didn't happen. Still makes me laugh when I think of poor peppy's face. (Wicked cat mom)
     
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  3. Janne

    Janne M.A.B (Mad About Bushcraft)

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    If the Vodka tastes awful, just put it in the freezer and drink it neat.
    That is what we do in Sweden with ( highly illegal) home distilled stuff, and when the flavouring failed.

    Alcohol is very dear in Scandinavia.
     
  4. Toddy

    Toddy Mod
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    It's easy enough to make ice brewed in a country that has good hard winters though.
     
  5. Robson Valley

    Robson Valley Full Member

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    Maybe easy to make ice here. But judging by the price of the "ice wines", it would seem magical.
    Yes, I have harvested grapes at -10C. Not amusing at all. Took 2 days to warm my guts.
     
  6. Janne

    Janne M.A.B (Mad About Bushcraft)

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    I have read about it, but never tried.
    I think the problem would be to get rid of the unwanted alcohols that boil off before you collect the Ethanol?

    Weirdly enough, when you freeze Vodka, it turns thick.
    My chest freezers are about -28C, and it makes it the fluidity of oil. That is for 40% Vodka.
     
  7. Toddy

    Toddy Mod
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    Ah, cross purposes. Ice brew is a misnomer for the stuff I mean, I suppose.

    Home-brew cider, if we get a really hard cold bit in Winter, can be put outside in a baking bowl, and as it freezes the water first, that icy jelly sort of stuff can be scooped out, and eventually what's left is what used to be called white lightening before a company registered the name for a cheap, strong cider sometime in the 1990's.
    The home made stuff just got called ice brewed. 'Ice brewed' ales, done the same way become incredible hangovers :rolleyes:

    Unlike the really good ice brewed wines.

    @Robson Valley
    Fresh grapes freeze really well and are a tasty munchy :)
     
  8. Robson Valley

    Robson Valley Full Member

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    I like a well-rotted Cabernet-Sauvignon, maybe a touch of Merlot for the chocolate finish.
    Rowan = European Mountain Ash = Sorbus aucuparia. Correct? Landscaping ornamental small tree here.
    We have 2 scruffy native species = S. scopulina and S.sitchensis.

    All of them are bird food. Great attractors and the squirrels get a few fruits, if they're lucky.
    We have watched, from 5m away, a hawk kill a feeding Waxwing in the front Mountain Ash tree.

    There's such a glut of fruit here that I've not heard of anyone do anything with the Mountain Ash berries.
     
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  9. Tengu

    Tengu Full Member

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    So you mean that Rowan berries are best bletted?
     
  10. Robson Valley

    Robson Valley Full Member

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    ". . . . bletted." Is that a fruit processing term?
     
  11. Janne

    Janne M.A.B (Mad About Bushcraft)

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    Kind of. You store certain fruits so they start a decomposition process, it makes them more palatable.
    Several fruits are treated like this.
    Ancient varieties of Pears and Apples, Medlars, Quince.

    The decomposition process breaks down Tannins, increases the sugar content, increases flavor and smell.
    A fresh Quince will give you stomach ache. A bletted one will give you a smile on your face.

    Think of hanging meat, but with fruit!

    Agening wine I guess is a similar process.

    Three wild fruits improve with betting. Lingonberries, Bog Cranberries ( grow in Europe) and Cloudberries.
    It is a disappearing culinary method unfortunately.
     
  12. Toddy

    Toddy Mod
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    They either shrivel up like currants or they go to mush if they're left on the tree. Usually the birds finish them off, but there are always a few left.
    Rowans just come ripe at the same time as the apples, so generally we just cook them to get rid of the stuff that can give folks digestive problems.
    But then, the British Isles are rich in fruits, and the Rowans, a few jars of jelly aside, are usually just left for the birds.

    The fruits that are traditionally bletted here are medlars and chequers.
     
  13. Robson Valley

    Robson Valley Full Member

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    I can harvest 25-35 lbs Amelanchier (Saskatoon) berries for my winter and you would never notice the environmental impact.
    The load of blue berries and cranberries as well as apples and hawthorn fruit is impressive here.
    Rowan would have to be at the bottom, hence for the birds, bears,moose & deer.
     
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  14. Toddy

    Toddy Mod
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    Sounds pretty much like here too. Right now I'm awash with Autumn fruiting raspberries, brambles, apples, pears, rosehips and quince. A friend tells me he knows where there are still sloes, so might do something with those too.
    Rowans are a bitter/sweet but colourful fruit. They make good jelly with apples, used much like marmalade really. Oranges don't grow here, but the rowans fill the space for the conserves.
    I think that any folks who 'need' the Rowans as a fruit/food must have a dearth of other crops.

    Today, I have 10kgs of apples to prep for the dehydrator, and 3kg of rasps to turn into jam and jelly. I don't waste the apple peelings either, they get boiled up and strained and the pulp boiled down, without any sugar added, to make apple spread, like the Sunwheel stuff. Pears are truly excellent dried, and the boiled down juice from the scraps turned into fruit leather or spread. My neighbour's tree is slowly ripening a bumper crop :)

    Hawthorn and rowans I most leave for the birds.

    I wish I had planted an orchard thirty years ago :D
     
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  15. crosslandkelly

    crosslandkelly A somewhat settled

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    Lots of apples and pears here too. Apparently all the houses around here are on ancient orchards belonging to the local manor house, which dates back to the 11th century.
     
  16. Toddy

    Toddy Mod
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    Oh you lucky man :D

    Astonishing variety of apples, pears, plums and the like in these islands, aren't there ?

    I think we ought to plant a lot more, and nut trees too :cool:
     
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  17. crosslandkelly

    crosslandkelly A somewhat settled

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  18. Toddy

    Toddy Mod
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    Sounds like a good day out rambling around :)
    Old buildings are fascinating :D
     
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  19. Janne

    Janne M.A.B (Mad About Bushcraft)

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    Was Rowan not considered a sacred/holy/magical tree by the pagans? I have a weak memory it was by the north Germanic beliefs?
     
  20. Tengu

    Tengu Full Member

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    Rowans keep away witches.

    Which, come to think of it, is about as silly as keeping vampires away with garlic.

    Garlic is endemic in Eastern European food, and Rowans common in Scotland.

    Here the birds dont eat until hungry. I dont think they like Rowan berries either.
     

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