Heartbeet Kitchen
Apple Shrub Recipe
October 13, 2015 in Canning and Preserving · Dairy-Free · Drinks · Fall · Gluten-Free · Nut-Free · Seasonal · Vegan · Winter · 20 Comments
 Apple Shrub recipe {via hearbeet kitchen blog}

Apple Shrub recipe {to preserve fall apples}Not only did I fall in love with salmon while I was in Alaska, but their vast assortment of wild berries too, far from the raspberries and strawberries you buy in stores. These berries are foraged and have varying names, from crowberries to blue huckleberries, to the real prize – nagoonberries. They’re all relatively tiny, with their own flavor profiles, but generally they have a tart/sweet balance.

As I talked to the locals, each would give a general area where you could stumble upon a few patches, but their own personal “gold mine” was kept a secret. It almost seemed like a faux pas to ask, right up there with talking politics, religion or asking a woman her age.

Like anything wild, they are meant to be savored rather than taken for granted. Just as one has their favorite berry picking spot, they usually have their favorite way to preserve them as well.

Apple Shrub {made with Sweetango apples}As I sat amongst several members of the community waiting for the Wild Harvest Feast to begin, one of the gals reached under the table and pulled out a tall glass bottle with filled with specialty – bright pink, Nagoonberry Shrub syrup. Next from from under the table came a brown bottle with gin.

I felt as if I was one of them, while we passed around the goods, poured ourselves a drink, and chatted about the beauty of the area.

Step-by-Step guide to Making Apple Shrub SyrupI hadn’t thought of making a shrub syrup from our local fruit until then. I only wish I’d have known how easy it is, this apple shrub recipe needing just 3 ingredients and a little waiting time.

They’re made the same way as they were in the colonial days, when lack of refrigeration required creativity to enjoy ripe fruit even during the cold winters. Maybe you’ve noticed them on upscale restaurant menus in the forms of cocktails and non-alcoholic drinks with flair, alongside kombucha and switchel.

Shrubs are truly delicious, adding a layered complexity to whatever they’re mixed with. Simply grate the fruit, mix it with a vinegar/sugar solution, and let it sit for a few days.

Step-by-Step guide to Making Apple Shrub SyrupI headed to the market when I got back and picked up a bushel of local SweeTango apples from my favorite orchard (a juicy cross between a Zestar and Honeycrisp), then began the process.

After 3 days hidden in the refrigerator, it turned into this sweet and tangy simple syrup, with the brightest apple flavor ever.

Apple Shrub {recipe}I’d compare it to a funky rendition of classic apple cider. With the juicy, crisp flavor of the sweetango’s, and subtle tartness from the cider vinegar, it’s fantastic in a bourbon or whiskey cocktail. And when you’re looking for something to warm up you by the fire, there are plenty of hot toddy’s that could be made.

Apple Shrub recipe {with step-by-step instructions}On Saturday I’ll be sharing my favorite way of enjoying it, which happens to be non-alcoholic too. Warmly spiced and quite delicious, I think you’re going to love it.

Hot Apple Shrub Cider {trendy twist on apple cider}

Apple Shrub Recipe

makes about 1 1/2 cups
Typically the fruit/sugar ration in shrubs is 1:1, but because the apples were so naturally sweet, I went lighter on the sugar.

Apple Shrub recipe {with step-by-step instructions}1 1/4 cups grated SweeTango or Honeycrisp apples
3/4 cup organic cane sugar
1 cup raw apple cider vinegar

Add apples, sugar, and apple cider vinegar to a glass mason jar. Attach jar cover tightly and shake liberally. Refrigerate and let sit for 3-4 days.

Remove from refrigerator and strain juice into a large bowl, then squeeze remaining juice out of apples using a colander. Pour juice into a glass container and keep refrigerated. Will stay good for up to 6 months if stored properly in refrigerator.

(These are the flasks I used, which come in a set of 2.)

This post contains affiliate links, which I make a small amount of money from should you purchase something.

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20 thoughts on “Apple Shrub Recipe

  1. Abby @ The Frosted Vegan

    I’ve been seeing shrubs everywhere, but your apple variation is making me think I need to just get on with it and make one already :) I love the stories of sharing drinks and food with locals, we can learn so much from others and they way they live life through food! xo

    Reply
  2. Danae @ Recipe Runner

    All of those berries you were introduced to in Alaska sound amazing! I can just imagine picking them and snacking away on them the whole time. This shrub sounds so perfect for fall. I’ve never made one, but am inspired to give it a try!

    Reply
    1. Amanda Paa Post author

      I think it would totally be your thing Kristie. And I’m sure you have wonderful local apples where you are! I like it because it’s much less finicky than kombucha too.

      Reply
  3. Donald

    I was wondering if you could use blueberries or figs instead of apples? I have never had a shrub before and it does sound interesting. I would like to try it in different dishes as well.

    Reply
  4. Kimberly

    Amandapaa,
    I’m so going to do this!
    I’ve never heard of a shrub before, but
    My tastebuds are tingling😁
    Thanks for sharing this recipe and your beautiful photos!

    Reply

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