witchdoctor's hut

potions for fixing stuff and breaking stuff

Cough Drops

Finally, a recipe I'd actually consider trying out:  (from http://www.herbmentor.com/make-your-own-herbal-cough-drops/)

 

To make this recipe you’ll need the following…

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon dried sage leaves
  • 1 tablespoon dried hyssop leaves
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme leaves
  • 2 cups of organic sugar
  • 3/4 cups of organic black strap molasses

Supplies

  • Something to pour the hard candy mixture into. I use a 9X13 glass casserole dish.
  • A cookie sheet or a hard candy mold will also work. I recommend using a hard candy thermometer, but this is optional.

To begin, prepare your hard candy molds for the mixture OR lightly grease a cookie sheet or casserole dish. I use melted coconut oil in my glass casserole dish. I assume olive oil would also work.

If you don’t have a candy thermometer then you’ll need a small cup of cold water nearby.

Next we’ll make a strong brew of tea by combining the sage, hyssop and thyme with one cup of water. Let this steep for 15 minutes (covered) and then strain off the herbs. We’ll use 1/2 cup of this strong tea. Next combine all the ingredients in a medium to large saucepan… This includes a 1/2 cup strong herbal tea… the sugar… and the black strap molasses.

If you are using a candy thermometer attach it to the side of the pan. Turn the burner to medium high heat and stir this mixture constantly until it reaches 300º F. If you aren’t using a candy thermometer you can periodically test the mixture by dropping a small amount in a cup of cold water (but keep stirring constantly so the mixture doesn’t burn!).

When the mixture solidifies when dropped into the cold water it’s done. It takes me about 15 minutes for the candy to get to 300º F.

Once it is ready, pour into the hard candy molds (or greased cookie sheet). If you are using a cookie sheet or casserole dish you’ll need to start cutting the cough drop squares immediately. If you wait too long the mixture will solidify. Keep in mind how big a cough drop generally is. The first time I made this recipe I cut the squares way too big which made them uncomfortable to use. To cut out the lozenges I use the end of a spatula to make lines across the dish in both directions. I keep going over and over the lines until the mixture completely hardens. You could also try using a knife or a pizza cutter. This takes me about fifteen minutes.

You’ll notice that the pan you cooked these in is now coated with a super hard candy coating. To clean my pan I simply fill it half full of water and then bring it to a boil. The mixture will dissolve in the water, making it an easy clean up job.

Once the mixture hardens you can store your cough drop pieces in an airtight container and keep them in a cool place. I have some batches that are 8 months old and are still good. If you live in a warm or humid environment you can also cover the pieces with an herbal powder (rose petal powder is nice) to keep them from sticking to each other.  

Healthy Eating Basics

I've been making up a bunch of potions lately, for various purposes... but of course, potions will only help so far... to really allow your body to reach it's true potential, you need to be encouraging health overall... So here's the basics:

1. STOP DRINKING POP.  Soda pop, energy drinks, diet pop, etc.  All the sugar and chemical syrup laden carbonated beverages.  Just stop.
No one should ever drink that stuff... it acts like a mainline of sugars and chemicals to your system... screwing up most of your body systems in one fell swoop.  If you only do one thing to improve your health, this would be the best thing to choose.  Do a google search on "effects of soda pop", or anything similar.... you'll see why.

 2. AVOID THE 5 WHITE POISONS:  White sugar, white flour, white rice, white pasta, and "white" (refined) oils.  These are all toxic and addictive food substitutes. 

  • Instead of White sugar, use honey or maple syrup instead. Stop eating candy. Start reading ingredient lists... sugar is in EVERYTHING.  And it is just as addictive, and probably as toxic, as other less legal white powders.  Avoid it like the plague.  
  • Instead of White flour (white bread, brown bread, donuts, cookies... um... its everywhere, once you start paying attention), eat whole grains instead, preferably soaked and/or sprouted. 
  • Instead of White rice, use brown rice and wild rice, and other varieties of grains. 
  • Instead of White pasta... well.. there aren't really many good substitutes, unless you start making your own spatzle or polenta. 
  • Instead of White oils... such as margarine and the regular over-processed canola oils... use olive oil, butter, or coconut oil. 

3. EAT GOOD QUALITY ANIMAL PRODUCTS.  This means meat (red meat especially for the men), milk, cheese, fish, eggs, etc.  30% of your diet should come from animals.  But the tricky part is... you need your animal sources to be healthy and free from pesticides, growth hormones, and other chemicals. Dairy should be raw (unpasturized) and sourced from healthy animals.  You will not find this kind of food in your regular supermarket... find an organic butcher, or start looking for local farmers, or learn to hunt, or buy a rabbits or chickens or a cow.  Raw milk is not legal in Canada, so you have to raise your own or buy it south of the border. 

4. EAT GOOD QUALITY FAT.  Fat does not make you fat.  Sugar and lack of excercise make you fat and unhealthy.  Your brain requires cholesterol to function... and your body manufactures it from the other food you eat.  Eat butter, coconut oil, olive oil, cod liver oil, other fish oils, flax oil, sunflower seed oil, etc.  Just make sure it is unprocessed... not pasturized, not hydrogenated, etc.

5. EAT FERMENTED VEGETABLES.  Sauerkraut, pickles, kimchi... any naturally lacto-fermented vegetables.  They are meant to help you digest.  Eat it often and lots of it.  Just make sure it isn't canned (cooked) first.

6. EAT SEA FOOD.  Any kind of sea foods... seaweeds, fish, shellfish, etc.  They contain minerals and nutrients that are unavailable elsewhere.

Methow

Methow Valley Herbs

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