Juniper Berries

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Buying Juniper Berries



 
1 oz. Only $1.99

 Add 1 oz. Juniper to basket

 

2 oz. Only $3.75

Add 2 oz. Juniper to basket

 

4 oz. Only $6.97

Add 4 oz. Juniper to basket

 

One cup is approximately three ounces.


 

 

About Juniper Berries and the Plant they Come From

 

 

Juniper berries are the dark blue fruit of an evergreen conifer named the Common Juniper tree, Juniperus communis. These trees grow in the Northern Hemisphere around the world and are generally cold hardy. Juniper trees very in size depending upon growing condition and can be as large as 40 feet tall, but are generally smaller, to a small compact shrub and everything in between. The bark and flexible twigs are reddish-brown and produce gray-green needle-like leaves.

The whole tree including the Juniper berries have a strong pine-resin aroma. The tree blooms with little yellow flowers that produce small, fleshy, green seed cones. These seed cones ripen and turn blue-black, or purple in two to three years and are what we call juniper berries. The juniper tree has bark that is reddish-brown and peeling. The needle like leaves are blue-green, narrow and pointed.

 

 

 

Juniper Berries Roll in Brewing

 

Juniper berries have a strong pine-like, resinous flavor that is slightly bitter, but as they mature their flavor becomes fresher and even has citrus notes. Imagine the flavor of gin whose main flavoring agent is Juniper berries. When crushed their pungent aroma is cedar like.

Whole Juniper berries should be crushed or ground prior to use to release their flavor. To make a tea, add one teaspoon crushed juniper berries to one cup of water, boil for two minutes, remove form the heat, cover and let the mixture steep for ten minutes before testing. A stronger strained tea can be made with one half to one ounce of juniper berries and two cups of boiling water, which can be added to secondary fermentation to impart the juniper flavor to beers.

Juniper berries are a very strong spice and should be added to beers very sparingly, sometimes just a few crushed berries is enough to impart a distinct juniper flavor. Use up to one ounce in stronger beers for a five gallon batch if you really enjoy the flavor of Juniper berries, or a half ounce for a subtler flavor in full flavored beers.

Add Juniper berries during the last 15 minutes of boil.

The flavor of Juniper berries in beer mellows over time, so aging a juniper flavored beer will tame the spice's strong flavor.

 

Juniper Berries History
 

 

 

Juniper berries have been used for thousands of years for their medical properties, as a preservative, and flavoring agent for foods. They were used by the Egyptians, as noted in some of their ancient scrolls, by the Greeks and the Romans.

Juniper berries have long been used to flavor foods in Northern and central Europe where their popularity persist to today, particularly in Germany and Scandinavian countries.

A spice mixture featuring juniper berries consists of parsley, fennel, bay leaves, and of course juniper berries.

 

 

 

Juniper Berries are used to flavor all kinds of foods including roasted meats, especially game, marinades, rubs,  coleslaw, cabbage, sauerbraten, sauces, stuffing and sometimes combined with alcohol or foods are combined with alcohol flavored with juniper berries. We would be remiss not to mention the spirit gin, which has been flavored with Juniper berries since the Middle Ages when the drink was used as a herbal tonic.

 

Beverages Flavored with Juniper Berries

 

Juniper Wine
Gin or Holland's Geneva
Scandinavian Aquavits
German Schnapps
Sahti-  A Finnish rye-and-juniper beer.
Pale Ales and IPAs
Bocks

 

 

  

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