Colds, Coughs, and Sore Throats
Colds, Coughs, and Sore Throats
* Wide-mouth quart canning jar, lid, and ring
* 2 cups raw honey, any flavor you like but tupelo is especially nice
* 1 lemon, well scrubbed, thinly sliced, and well mashed in the saucepan. Remove seeds you see and be sure to put in all the juice
* 1 orange, well scrubbed, thinly sliced, and well mashed in the saucepan. Remove seeds you see and be sure to put in all the juice
* 1 cup filtered water, spring water, or other non-chlorinated/non-fluoridated/non-distilled water
* ½ inch slice fresh ginger, finely minced but not grated
* 1 stick cinnamon (cassia), broken
* ½ tsp freshly grated nutmeg or tiny pea-sized chunk (optional, for flavor only)
Wash the quart jar, lid, and ring in hot soapy water, rinse well, and bring to a boil in fresh hot water to sterilize. Remove from water, drain, and set aside.
Combine all medicine ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring gently rather frequently until the honey dissolves in the water. Carefully skim off any scum that rises. Do not boil! Simmer for 10 minutes.
Carefully lift out the pieces of fruit and put into the sterilized jar. Carefully pour liquid and remaining ingredients into jar, wipe the top clean, cover with the lid an ring, and allow to cool. The lid will ‘seal’ and ping. Release the seal, re-cover, and refrigerate until needed.
Use as often as you wish when your throat feels scratchy or you feel like you might be coming down with something. Rarely will anyone need more than one serving. This is potent medicine.
To use, turn the jar over a couple of times to mix it up and let settle for a couple of seconds.
For one person, pour two or three nice big tablespoons or so through a strainer into a big cup of boiling water and mix it up well. For the grownups, add a shot of bourbon if you wish.
For more servings, pour about a cupful through a strainer into a 44 oz tea pot. Fill the tea pot with boiling water and share with the whole family so that, hopefully, no one else will get sick. Drink it as warm as you can stand.
Nice to sweeten hot tea too, herbal or Lipton but you might wish you hadn’t if someone suddenly gets sick and there isn’t any left.
If everything was well-sterilized and the mixture properly simmered but not boiled, this will stay good in the fridge for a year.
Notes: Many recipes perform well with substituted ingredients. This is not one of them. You’ll only be making this once or twice a year so do it right.
Don’t make this if you can’t get high-quality, good-tasting honey because the flavor of it will only intensify as it waits in the fridge. Honey has a natural form of hydrogen peroxide and it forms the recipe’s medicinal foundation. There are more expensive bourbons but if you chose to put a shot or two in a cup, Wild Turkey 101 Proof has a flavor that matches these ingredients deliciously. The lower proof is nice too.
DO NOT use ground cinnamon. Don’t make this if you don’t have a fresh, high-quality, fragrant stick of cinnamon (cassia). Stick cinnamon has medicinal value and this recipe relies on the quantity in a full stick. Cassia is one of the “50 Fundamental Herbs” in Chinese medicine. Get the good stuff for this recipe.
DO NOT use ground ginger. Don’t make this if you can’t get a beautiful, fragrant, firm piece of fresh ginger. The recipe relies on the medicinal value of the volatile oils in fresh, young ginger rhizomes. Avoid consuming the minced pieces if you’re taking Warfarin or have gallstones.
Don’t make this if you can’t get a beautiful, fresh orange and a beautiful, fresh lemon. Orange juice and dried peel, lemon juice and lemon zest, might make an inoffensive beverage, but the recipe relies on the medicinal value of the bioflavonoids and antiseptic properties in the fresh fruit and the terpene oils and aldehydes in the fresh peel. Drink a glass of orange juice or lemon-water if you want the nutritional value of the juice.
The Magic and Medicine of Plants, (c) April 1990, Reader's Digest Association Inc, Pleasantville, New York
The National Honey Board website, www.honey.com
Complete Lemon Information from www.drugs.com
Oranges: Safe Methods to Store, Preserve, and Enjoy from the University of California website
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