In May the spruce trees get the most beautiful and delicate green buds. These spruce tips smell fantastic of resin and are super healthy rich in minerals such as potassium and magnesium. You can eat them raw in salads or in pesto or make them into lemonade. You can also cook them into syrup, jam or pickle them. We are already dreaming about roasted pork with pickled spruce tips! You too?
Here is the recipe for pickled spruce tips:
4 dl water
4 dl sugar
3 tbsp. vinegar (we used 2 tbsp. of elderflower vinegar and 1 tbsp. of apple vinegar, but you can easily use common organic vinegar.)
3 dl fresh spruce tips
Clean the spruce tips carefully. Pour the water, sugar and vinegar into a pan and heat it up until the sugar is dissolved. Put the spruce tips in the pan and let them cook over low heat for about 20-30 min. until they are tender.
Take the tips out of the pan and put them in a sterilized jar. Boil the mix into syrup and pour it over the tips until they are completely covered. Cap while hot. If there is any syrup left pour it into a thin slender jar and use the syrup for pancakes. Keep the pickled spruce tips dark and cool.
IMPORTANT: Don’t pick yew, which is poisonous. The difference is that spruce smells of resin, where the yew branches do not smell and get small red berries. The yew needles are dark green and glossy on the upper surface and light green and dull beneath, whereas the spruce is more light green and the same colour on both sides. If you are not sure, ask someone for advice.
Have a good spruce tips hunt!