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Mike Collins
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PostFri Jun 12, 2020 3:42 pm 
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While biking today I passed some Red Elderberry, Sambucus racemosa, shrubs in a low lying area. The red fruit is now ripening. Has anyone in this forum gathered the berries for consumption? What did you make with the berries? How did you separate the toxic seeds from the pulp of the fruit? Thank you for your time and assistance.
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Malachai Constant
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PostFri Jun 12, 2020 3:58 pm 
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Most parts of the plant contain a cyanide producing glucoside. The berries are usually cooked for jam or wine. The blue elderberries contain less toxins. Do you feel lucky.

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"You do not laugh when you look at the mountains, or when you look at the sea." Lafcadio Hearn
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Mike Collins
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PostFri Jun 12, 2020 4:30 pm 
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The fruit has been used by the First Nations for thousands of years. Radiocarbon dating from a site in Oregon revealed a date ~7,000 years BP. The link will take you to an archeological study done on middens associated with dwellings. The middens revealed high numbers of Red Elderberry seeds showing that they were being removed prior to consumption. However it is possible that the seeds were being spit into one collective area. But mainly I am interested in who has eaten food products from Red Elderberry and how they separated the seeds.
https://d1wqtxts1xzle7.cloudfront.net/51486489/s0305-4403_2802_2900242-x20170123-687-jg29ap.pdf?1485206052=&response-content-disposition=inline%3B+filename%3DExploring_the_Use_of_Red_Elderberry_Samb.pdf&Expires=1592007713&Signature=GyhfF~xz8m5jf1XwgFCrmRufrppqILDJT9~fqcJo0smGx6xefux4rEd5ceBV-lV-jy-cUVMqWirkHgdi2UTjfprZsOGFshyiR8Kyc0pn-wdJ~F7OQttdRMOa~PtFLQzNrSveKlwxGlwBiFWKDy~aJ-YMiP5GHIpsUeE8XuWt8h1ckXXweTbJw9WxPmzZ8n3pwbkdcYlNp6YBtjfZcTfGlDmkjohbFlgmf4hf2T0~fi3gYwYnZLlPBtaYjSUWFlkxCHWGAoA5wCMDUisbNRaktYBTP3dHX0BSxi7~RHCvrDyeV0FTyO5tH8SI7zsT8mjNALA~Ynxnwq4d8rxzkoGDsA__&Key-Pair-Id=APKAJLOHF5GGSLRBV4ZA
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Ski
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PostFri Jun 12, 2020 5:55 pm 
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Mr. Collins-
I am getting an error message when I click on the URL you've provided above, so I cannot comment on that.

I just got off the phone with my mother, who told me:
BLUE Elderberry = okay to eat if prepared properly (e.g., jelly or wine)
RED Elderberry = poison, although the birds gobble them up.

When I read to her the snippet you've posted above (about the middens filled with seeds) she said "They dried them and smoked them and used them as a seasoning for fish."
I cannot speak to the veracity of that, and I didn't ask her for sources, but she's pretty well-versed on this kind of stuff.

Which begs the question: What do you suppose sarbar might know about this?

As to removing seeds, we made a huge batch of Oregon Grape jelly last summer after I picked a few gallons of berries off the bushes at my mother's house. We ran them through a "Foley food mill" to mash the fruit and extract the juice, but the seeds were small enough to pass through the tiny holes in the food mill. I would assume Elderberry seeds would pass through it just as easily.
I tried running the mashed pulp and juice through a fine-mesh Jelly Strainer Bag, but after only getting half a cup of liquid through the thing over the course of 20 minutes, we gave up and ran the rest through a wire mesh sieve (after agreeing that we were not making jelly for the Queen of England.)
The end product, while not perfectly clear, was nonetheless quite tasty and without any seeds. (Shoot me a shipping address via P/M and I'll mail you a jar - it's really got quite an interesting flavor.)

Hope that helps a bit, although I'm going to guess that sarbar is probably more conversant on this one than I or my mother.

BK

Foley food mill 01
Foley food mill 01
Foley food mill 02
Foley food mill 02

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Mike Collins
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PostFri Jun 12, 2020 6:55 pm 
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Thanks for showing me the Foley mill. I can get some berries and see how small the seeds are. Maybe I could jury-rig the mill with a smaller mesh. One non-edible use for the Red Elderberry fruit was by the Makah people to waterproof their woven cedar bark hats. At least that is what I have read.
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Ski
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PostFri Jun 12, 2020 7:30 pm 
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Three different size screens:

https://www.amazon.com/Weston-Stainless-61-0101-W-Capacity-Dishwasher/dp/B000T3HWR2

OR maybe

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07WGS5FXX/ref=sspa_dk_detail_5

(girlfriend is SO smart sometimes!) wink.gif

Cuisinart has one with diff. size discs.
German model made by Kuchenprofi has screen that goes down to 1.3 mm ( https://www.amazon.com/Kuchenprofi-Professional-Stainless-Steel-Vegetable/dp/B0000C8T9I )

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"I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach. 
I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each."
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Mike Collins
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PostFri Jun 12, 2020 7:57 pm 
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Thank you for that information. One of those ought to work.
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Ski
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PostFri Jun 12, 2020 9:09 pm 
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^ That "Foley food mill" in the photos was purchased at a second-hand shop for a couple bucks. The missing spring was easily found at ACE hardware. Just an FYI there.

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"I shall wear white flannel trousers, and walk upon the beach. 
I have heard the mermaids singing, each to each."
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mike
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PostSat Jun 13, 2020 4:38 pm 
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Might try these. Smaller sizes available.

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