When the school year starts, I start thinking about cold weather. I wait, rather impatiently, for the need to pull warm sweaters out of their storage places. I long for hot tea and soup of autumn. I also start planning for the cold season that is ahead.
One of the drawbacks of daycare/school is the fact that illness swirls around the school almost constantly for 3 months of the year. We have been lucky for the last few years and have had few bouts of illness with E. I don’t attribute that to luck, or even the good diet she eats or the amount of physical activity she gets even when it is cold out. I attribute it to Elderberry Syrup. I make a big batch of my own, freeze 2 quart jars of it in the freezer and enjoy it all winter long. Here are a couple of my cold season necessities. Enjoy making your own.
Everything and Elderberry Syrup:
8 oz elderberries (dried)
2 oz Oregon Grape Root (dried)
1 oz Licorice root (dried)
1 cinnamon stick, 5 inches or so
2 oz rose hip (dried,cracked)
3 oz ginger sliced thin (fresh)
Weigh each ingredient into the pot except for the ginger (feel free to add 2 oz ecinacea root if you will not be using this too frequently. Astragalus is another good herb to add. Play around to develop your recipe). Add 9-10 9 cups of water. Bring to a boil and simmer for 30 minutes. Add ginger and simmer for another 15-20 minutes. Strain the mixture through cheesecloth (I use a kitchen napkin). Add:
2 cups honey
1/4 cup brandy
Pour the syrup into bottles/jars – I then put it into the freezer and keep one of the containers in the fridge. Take 1 Tablespoon each day during cold/flu season and multiple times a day (3-4 times or as you feel comfortable) when you feel the beginning of an illness. We go through lots and lots of elderberry syrup!
Wellness tea for all
1 oz each each or so. The exact amount isn’t that important – I used about .75 oz for the lemon balm and the mint for this batch and 1 oz for everything else.
Measure all the ingredients into a jar you can keep on hand. When you need some, take out a tablespoon or so, put it in a tea ball. Pour boiling water over it and let steep for 5-10 minutes. Add lemon and/or honey. Enjoy.
1-2 part wellness tea
1 part dried thyme
1 part dried sage
Mix all the ingredients into a jar you can keep on hand. When you need a cough tea, take out a teaspoon or so, put it in a tea ball. Add:
1 slice fresh ginger (or cubed, sugared ginger if you can do sugar) added to taste
Pour boiling water over it and let steep 5-10 minutes. Add lemon and/or honey. Enjoy.