In this part of the world it is not uncommon to see a Rowan or Mountain Ash (Sorbus Spp.) tree in a yard. Since ancient times people have been planting them, as it is supposed to ensure a happy home and keep evil spirits at bay while symbolizing courage, wisdom and protection. Or maybe they are popular because people like the look of the bright orangey-red berries.
But did you know you can eat those berries? You wouldn’t want to snack on a ton of them directly off the tree because of the parasorbic acid, but it turns out that they can make some tasty items if they’ve been sweetened up with a few hard frosts and processed a bit. This makes them a great late season item for foraging and is why I snagged a couple cups of alley berries to experiment with!
Rowan Berry Spread and/or Fruit Leather
2 cups rowan berries, cleaned
1 cup sugar
4 cups apples/crabapples, diced
1 Tbsp ginger, chopped
Pinch of salt
- Cook together all your ingredients on medium heat for about 30 minutes stirring occasionally. Add a little water if the pot starts to get low on liquid.
- Then pass everything through a food mill.
- Place in a container and use as a spread over the next week or two or....
- Spread onto a non-stick drying sheet and dehydrate at 135F until it becomes tacky in texture (6-10 hrs). Then cut into pieces and roll up if you like. :)