Did you know that Sea Buckthorn berries are a power house of antioxidants and vitamins especially Vit C and Vit A ? Sea Buckthorn is a miracle plant that gives us one of the best types of berries in the world. These berries are too good to be wasted with just jellies, so I have compiled together top 10 Sea Buckthorn Recipes in this post. I will also be giving you tips on harvesting them easily.
Sea Buckthorn berries are also called as Sand thorn or sallow thorn. The German word is Sanddorn. These common shrubs have dense and stiff branches and are very thorny. The leaves on these shrubs are a distinct pale silvery-green color. Last year I have already posted an easy to make Sea Buckthorn Jelly Recipe. I also mentioned the process to harvest these thorny berries and linked more information on Sea Buckthorn berries /Hippophae .
Tips on Harvesting
The best time for harvesting Sea Buckthorn berries is just before the first freeze. Typically the berries get ripe by mid of September. So lets say by end of September till early October would be typical harvest time in Switzerland.
The berries grow in a very tight clumps thereby making it difficult to pick. They also lack an abscission layer, meaning the berry does not detach from the stem when it is ripe. In fact, it pretty much has a death grip on the tree. So how can you harvest the berries?
You can take a pair of sharp pruning shears and snip the berries out of the tree. Try to do this somewhat sparingly because the shrub has to recover for the next season. If we cut a lot of the branches, the following year the yield will not be so good. Some gardeners even go so far as to say to harvest every second year.
So lets leave some for the birds shall we.
Another way to harvest would be to let the berries freeze and then shake the shrubs and collect the berries. That would be tedious in my garden, we have difficulty to get to the shrubs as it is.
A third way would be to freeze those cut branches and then pull out the berries. Our friend tried this and he wouldn’t advice this because your fingers do get frozen.
This year I figured out and easy method to remove those berries without having to pick them individually. We used a fork to pick out the ripe berries. Click on the short clip below to see how we did it.
Without further ado lets dive into those recipes.
How to pick the Sea Buckthorn berries easily Video
Top 10 Sea Buckthorn Berry Recipes
Wash the berries and dry them on a cloth and pick the best sturdy ripe berries and freeze the berries. These berries can be used for smoothies and also juiced during the winter months. They give an extra boost of Vitamin C needed especially in winter to prevent colds and flu.
We used a juicer to extract the juice from the washed berries because the berries will just be crushed easily to extract the juices. Plus by using a juicer the pulps are easily separated without much effort. Since we cannot consume all the juice in one go, I froze the juice into silicone molds to use at a later date. We can also throw these cubes, dilute it with a little water, add some honey and drink them. Because, the taste is quite tart, I needed a sweetener. If you don’t mind the tart taste you can drink it straight away. These cubes can also be added into smoothies.
How to Juice Sea Buckthorn Berries if you have no Juicer
Wash the berries and blend them using a hand blender or a food processor. This will result in a runny puree of the berries and their seeds.
Add a sweetener, and blend the berries for 1 more minute.
Strain the juice using a strainer, and set the pulp aside. Don’t throw away the pulp, we will get to it later.
Dilute the juice with water. It is best to dilute the juice if you don’t want it very tart. Another reason is to protect the enamel of our teeth.
Freeze the juice if you have excess and cannot consume in one go.
3. Purée-ing the berries
Can you purèe these berries ? Yes, that would be another option. Purée them to achieve a fine consistency. Pour the purée into molds and freeze them. In addition to having smaller cube, you have portion control and its easier to defrost them when needed. Once frozen, remove from the molds and transfer to freezer bags.
4. Sea Buckthorn Tea
Sea Buckthorn teas are known to aid weight loss, although I wouldn’t lay medical claims on this. A tea containing sea buckthorn leaves is also a good source of vitamins, antioxidants, protein building blocks (amino acids), fatty acids and minerals; for improving blood pressure and lowering cholesterol; preventing and controlling blood vessel diseases; and boosting immunity. If you can air dry the berries, you can make tea with it.
Sea buckthorn tea recipe
- 2 Tbsps dry sea buckthorn berries with some leaves
- 1 cup water
Add the berries and dried leaves and water into a pot. Bring to a boil then remove from heat and cover with a lid. Let the berries and leaves infuse for 10 minutes. Add some lemon juice and sweetener to it. This is optional.
5. Sea Buckthorn Muffin Recipe
1 cup (250 ml) unbleached flour
2 tsp (5 ml) baking powder
½ cup (125 ml) granulated sugar
Pinch of salt
½ cup (125 ml) sea buckthorn berries, fresh or frozen, washed and destemmed
1 table spoon. Egg Replacer or ( 1Egg beaten)
¼ cup (63 ml) butter, melted
½ cup (125 ml) milk
Preheat oven to 380°F (180°C). Place parchment liners in a 12 cup muffin pan.
Mix together flour, baking powder, sugar and salt in a medium bowl. Add sea buckthorn berries and mix to coat.
In a separate small bowl, mix together egg (or if using the egg replacer follow the instructions), butter, and milk.
Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the liquid ingredients. Stir just until combined. Pour batter into prepared muffin pan. Bake for 15 minutes.
Note: I used an egg replacer called Veg-egg for this Since I am a vegetarian and eat no eggs.
Because sea buckthorn berries are used whole in this recipe, be prepared for a few crunchy seeds. You can use berry purée if you wish to avoid the seeds.