Haws / Hawthorn fruit

Hello people,

We've had an abundance of fruit in my area this autumn (Apparently, that means we are due a bad winter! 😱) . The hedgerows are filled with haws. Now, I've done a bit of research on haws and learned that they are good for asthma and heart problems, so I was really determined to make some kind of syrup with them.

However, I've found that they are a nightmare to prepare! All of the websites make it look so simple. The seeds are poisonous so you can either crush the fruit in a pestle and mortar and pick the seeds out or boil the fruit and then try to strain it.

I've tried both methods and ended up feeling defeated. Everything was so sticky that I lost most of the fruit pulp whilst picking out the seeds. Also, I think the holes in my sieve may be a little small as I just couldn't push a decent amount of pulp through it. It was all very labour intensive and I now understand why they've been abandoned as a food!

Anyway, has anyone found a good way to extract the seeds? And what goodies have people made from haws?


  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,513 admin

    Are you talking about Black Haws (Viburnum prunifolium) or Hawthorn (Crataegus monogyna)? Black Haws are in the same genus as Cramp Bark so would make a good antispasmodic but I would think it would be the bark, not the fruit that would be used for that purpose. Hawthorn is a heart and circulatory tonic. Works great for blood pressure issues.

    With the difficulty you are having in crushing the fruit, it must be Black Haws and not Hawthorn that you have growing. I would think that if you just boiled the fruit and put it through a jelly bag, you could use the juice to make jelly or a syrup.

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