The Alberta rose! It was chosen as our national flower in 1930.
Just three average rose hips contain as much vitamin c as one medium sized orange and what's more it holds that vitamin C through cooking canning or drying too! This flower helped families stay healthy during the long winter months.
Grandma would be sure to collect the little berry that follows the flower when it was a vivid red and slightly soft to the finger pinch test. Hips that are semi ripe or still green are still rich in vitamin C but they are used at this stage in jelly or jam because this is when they’re higher in pectin.
Once her ripe rose berries were picked she’d cut each one lengthwise and dry in her oven and turning occasionally being careful not to overheat them – if they’re brown, oh o that’s not good. When dried properly they're a beautiful and very distinct red!
We have the luxury of food dehydrators today! Once Grandma's were dried we’d help remove the little hairs and seeds by shaking them in a couple sieves strapped together.
She’d store them in a jar in a dry place and when ever she needed them for cooking shed soak and boil them into a puree.
Grandma always picked more than us – she wasn’t eating of them raw off the bush. Lucky it takes a while for us little ones to pick the seeds and hairs off or there wouldn’t be any for jam hey - Grandma!
"The Prairie is my Garden"
By Harvey Dunn
By Harvey Dunn
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