Rose Hip Tea
We have had some strong winds recently, so in some areas of the state the fall color show may be short lived. Hopefully there are still some colors to enjoy for awhile yet.
Even though the autumn winds may blow away our foliar color show, the bright red of rose hips should persist well into winter if the animals leave them alone. Rose hips, of course, are the fruits of roses. North Dakota has four native roses, and all of them produce edible rose hips.
One of the little pleasures of autumn for a few North Dakotans is rose hip tea. After the first frost, when the rose hips turn a bright red, a tasty tea can be made by simply steeping the hips in hot water. Just cut the ends off a few hips, cover them with water, bring them to a boil, and simmer or steep for around ten minutes, then enjoy. Start with a half dozen hips per cup of water and adjust subsequent batches to your taste. Some people like to spice the tea up with a bit of cinnamon.
Collecting enough rose hips from the prairie roses may be difficult, but I have found that woods rose can provide a bonanza of hips. Woods rose is a shrub that grows to three or four feet tall. Each plant generally produces several flowers, resulting in several rose hips. Woods rose may be found throughout the state in brushy and wooded areas, coulees and ravines, and along the banks of rivers and streams. During the fall, the bright red rose hips of woods rose are quite easy to spot. Find an area with a small population of woods rose and a person can easily collect enough hips to make a few batches of tea.
While out hunting, I occasionally have to stop to collect a few rose hips and put in my hunting vest pockets. As you might expect, a grouse occasionally flushes when I am so preoccupied. So I end up giving up a shot at roast grouse in exchange for rose hip tea. That’s okay.
You can make more than just tea from rose hips. Euell Gibbons, in his book Stalking the Healthful Herbs gives recipes for rose hip jam as well as rose hip soup. There are also several rose hip recipes available on the internet, including at least one for rose hip puree
Take the time to enjoy the fall colors in your area. Also look for some rose hips and make a batch of tea. Who knows, it may become a favorite fall tradition.
Natural North Dakota is supported by NDSU Central Grasslands Research Extension Center and Minot State University-Bottineau, and by the members of Prairie Public. Thanks to Sunny 101.9 in Bottineau for their recording services.
Listen To Radio Online
Log-on and dig deep into the news of the day. It’s all online in our Public NewsRoom.» Visit the Public NewsRoom
Your contributions make quality radio programming possible.» Pledge your support today.