• 12Oct

    Taste of Herbs: Elderberry Oxymel Recipe

    HerbMentor HerbMentor·119 videos

    An oxymel is a mixture of honey and vinegar.

    http://tasteofherbs.com Oxymels are a great preparation for boggy and congested coughs. An oxymel is basically a combination of vinegar and honey giving these preparations a sour and sweet taste. Adding herbs gives it those healing qualities as well. (recipe below)

    This oxymel is a gorgeous purple color and combines the healing power of elderberries along with the stimulating expectorant qualities of ginger and elecampane.

    What you’ll need…

    dried elderberries
    2 tablespoons of dried ginger
    2 tablespoons of elecampane root
    apple cider vinegar
    jar with plastic lid

    Fill a quart size mason jar 1/3 to 1/2 full with elderberries. Add the elecampane and ginger to the jar.

    Add an equal amount of honey and apple cider vinegar. Stir well.

    Cover with a plastic lid. (Don’t use a metal lid.)

    The next day stir it again and add more vinegar if necessary. (The dried elderberries will swell a bit.)

    Let this sit for 2-6 weeks, stirring occasionally.

    When done, strain off well using a cheesecloth.

    Take this liberally for wet, congested coughs that produce a lot of mucus.

    Store in the fridge and use within 6 months or so.

    Recipe by Rosalee de la Forêt. ©LearningHerbs. Visithttp://tasteofherbs.com

  • 08Oct


    spinach, basil, cilantro, tomatoes, aloe vera

  • 04Oct

     Cilantro: This herb can purify water too – CNN.com*





    Cilantro: This herb can purify water too


    (TIME.com) – The next time you find yourself facing some questionable drinking water, look for some cilantro.

    At least that’s what a team of U.S. and Mexican researchers made up of undergraduate students suggest.

    The research team, lead by Douglas Schauer of Ivy Tech Community College in Lafayette, Indiana, along with colleagues from the Universidad Politécnica de Francisco I. Madero in Hidalgo, Mexico, have been studying the region of Tule Valley near Mexico City to identify cheaper ways to filter water.

    Mexico City has long dumped its waste water in the valley, and the contaminated water is then used by regional farmers to irrigate crops. Once in the edible foods, heavy metals such as lead and nickel can make their way to consumers, where they can contribute to neurological and other health problems.

    “The organic toxins we can take care of pretty easily with a number of different methods, but the only way to really get rid of those heavy metals is to treat them with filtering agents like activated charcoal (like what’s found in a Brita filter), but those types of materials are kind of expensive,” says Schauer. “They are a little expensive for us to use, but they are very expensive to the people living in that region.”


    After testing various samples of plants from cacti to flowers, the researchers determined that cilantro is the most prevalent and powerful so-called bioabsorbant material in the area. Bioabsorption is the scientific term for using organic materials often found in plants, that when dried, could replace the charcoal currently used in filters.

    The team suspects that the outer wall structure of the tiny cells that make up the plant are ideal for capturing metals. Other plants, like dandelions and parsley may also provide similar bioabsorbant capabilities.

    Schauer says ground-up cilantro can be inserted into a tube into which water is passed through. The cilantro allows the water to trickle out but absorbs metals, leaving cleaner drinking water. Dried cilantro can also be placed into tea bags that are placed in a pitcher of water for a few minutes to suck out the heavy metals.


    “It’s something they already have down there, it takes minimal processing, and it’s just a matter of them taking the plants and drying them out on a rock in the sun for a couple of days,” says Schauer.

    Because cilantro isn’t an essential crop, using it as a purifier won’t take away from people’s food needs in the region, and the relative ease with which the plant grows also makes it a realistic option for cleansing water.

    So far, the researchers reported success in removing lead and nickel with their cilantro filters, and are studying how well the herb can removed other heavy metals found in the Tule Valley water such as arsenic and mercury. “We are hoping we can look at how cilantro absorbs those metals, and see if those metals work in some kind of synergy when they come into contact with the biomass,” says Schauer. “We need to look at mixtures of metals to see if cilantro evenly pulls all the metals out.”

    How much cilantro would it take to effective make contaminated water drinkable? Schauer says a handful of cilantro will nearly cleanse a pitcher full of highly contaminated water of its lead content.

    The researchers are presented their findings at the national meeting of the American Chemical Society.

    This article was originally published on TIME.com

  • 02Oct

    thedurianking – I’ve always really liked his site/vids

  • 18Sep
    Learn how to dry rose hips, make puree, and turn the puree into rose hip fruit leather. The fruit leather directions are for sun-drying, but you can dry it in your oven on the lowest setting (see below), if you wish.



    • 4 cups (1 Litre) of rose hips


    Just after a frost is the best time to gather rose hips. Snap off the tails as you pick,or later when you reach home. Spread the hips out on a clean surface and allow to dry partially. When the skins begin to feel dried and shriveled, split the hips and take out the large seeds — all of them. If you let the hips dry too much, it will be difficult to remove the seeds. If not dry enough, the inside pulp will be sticky and cling to the seeds. After the seeds are removed, allow the hips to dry completely before storing or they will not keep well. Store in small, sealed plastic bags. These will keep indefinitely in the freezer or for several months in the refrigerator. They are packed with vitamin C and are good to munch on anytime you need extra energy…or a moderately sweet nutlike “candy.”

    Making Puree:

    Use soft ripe rose hips (the riper they are, the sweeter they are). It takes about 4 cups (1 Litre) of rose hips to make 2 cups (480 ml) of puree. Remove stalks and blossom ends. Rinse berries in cold water. Put them into a pan and add enough water to almost cover. Bring to a boil and simmer 10 to 15 minutes. Press through a sieve or strainer. All that does not go through the sieve is placed in the pan again. Add a little water, enough to almost cover, if you want a thicker puree, add slightly less. This time heat but do not boil so vigorously. This will dissolve a little more of the fruit so that it will go through the sieve. Press again and then repeat the process one more time. By now, most of the fruit should have gone through the sieve leaving only seeds and skin to discard.

    Yield: about 2 cups

    Drying Puree:

    Line a cookie sheet, 12 by 17 inches (30 by 42 cm), with plastic wrap. This size cookie sheet holds approximately 2 cups (480ml) of puree. Spread puree or fruit leather evenly over the plastic but do not push it completely to the sides. Leave a bit of plastic showing for easy removal. Place on a card table or picnic table in the hot sun to dry. If the plastic is bigger than the cookie sheet and extends up the sides, anchor it with clothes pins so it will not flop down and cover the edges of the leather. Puree should dry in the sun six to eight hours.

    Recipe Source: “Cooking Alaskan By Alaskans” (Alaska Northwest Books)
    Reprinted with permission.

    Peggy’s Notes:

    Rose hips may also be dried in an electric dehydrator (following the manufacturer’s instructions for fruit leathers) or in the oven.

    Oven-Dried Rose Hips

    Prepare rose hips as instructed above. Preheat oven to the lowest setting or 200 F. Line cookie sheet with non-stick foil. Spread cleaned rose hips evenly on the pan in a single layer. Dry in the oven for 6 to 12 hours. Time will vary due to the size of your rose hips and your oven. Check often. The rose hips should remain pliable, not brittle. Place dried rose hips in freezer bags, remove the air, and seal tightly.

    Oven-Dried Rose Hips Fruit Leather

    To dry in the oven, make puree as above. Preheat oven to the lowest setting or 200 F. Line cookie sheet with non-stick foil. Spread puree evenly over the foil. Place in the oven and let dry for 3 to 4 hours (oven temperatures will vary). The leather should feel slightly tacky to the touch, but still be pliable. Roll up the fruit leather on the foil and cut into strips about 1-inch wide, or to suit your needs. Store the rolled up strips in an airtight container.

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  • 13Sep

    ginger tonic

     Cut up organic, peeled ginger into small chunks. Fill the jar 3/4 full with the cut ginger.
    Pour vodka (80 proof or higher) over the ginger leaving no air at the top.
    Place a plastic bag over the top so the metal lid doesn’t touch the mixture.
    Set aside for 6-8 weeks.
    Shake daily for first week.
    Store somewhere dark
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  • 28Jul


    Achy muscle aid
    Ginger’s warming essential oil improves circulation and blood flow, making it an ace at relieving tired muscles. Try this soak, from Leah Sherman, a naturopathic physician in Portland, Oregon: Grate 4 tablespoons fresh ginger, and seal it in a cotton bag; place bag under running bathwater.

  • 15Jun

    D -A friend of mine says she just gave turmeric to her teenage daughter, and in 3 days her acne disappeared! She’s says to get the one with black pepper,

    and make sure you eat it with fat. But I read you must take with vitamin D3, so don’t know the answer to that!

    So they gave it to another teenage guy friend of hers, and same thing happened!

    Here’s a story from the NET -http://freefromacne.com/turmeric-acne/

    My Experience With Turmeric for Acne Troubles

    by Anna Stacy November 15, 2012 Follow me on Twitter

    My Experience With Turmeric for Acne Troubles

    It is one thing to have a not so healthy skin, but entirely another to have acne problems.

    We are so conscious of our skin that we treat skin problems as a burden or a sin; hiding away somewhere while it lasts. Even a small zit seems to threat to our personality and looks. From expensive dermatologists to Ayurvedic treatment, every type of remedy is desperately sought by men and women alike as soon as acne hits the stage.

    Though there are many topical and oral medicines that help you get rid of acne, but here we are about to disclose about a natural herbal remedy that not only removes acne but also prevents it from attacking again.

    Yes, you heard it right.

    Let me tell you about the turmeric acne relief. It is an inexpensive, easy to use and highly effective ingredient that can save the day, just when you are about to lose hope.

    Turmeric is an amazing gift of nature; it is the root of a plant named Curcumin Longa that has antibacterial qualities. This Curcumin ingredient contains antiseptic, pain killer, anti-inflammatory qualities. But that’s not all…

    All over the world, dermatologists and beauticians are starting to realize and further investigate the astonishing benefits of turmeric for skin and body.

    Here are a few benefits that might interest a person suffering from any type of acne:

    1) Worried about pigmentation?

    A little turmeric added with either cucumber or lemon extract can work wonders for you. Not only can the application of it on face reduce pigmentation but it can also even out the skin discoloration.

    2) Giving up on acne solutions?

    Mix a little turmeric with sandalwood powder and plain water. This harmless paste does not have any side effects, even in prolonged use.

    3) Need to Exfoliate?

    Using turmeric powder to make a scrub mixed with gram flour is a great way to exfoliate and dry out mild acne. Face masks made from turmeric have skin softening and glowing affects.

    4) Need first aid at home?

    Turmeric mixed with Aloe gel, can instantly sooth a burn. The anti- oxidant qualities in this ingredient can help fight off mild skin abrasion and rashes.

    5) Feeling exhausted?

    Turmeric mixed in hot milk can not only help you fight fatigue, but it is also a great remedy for throat infections.

    6) Want to learn about an ultimate health booster?

    Turmeric when combined with honey is ideal to counter anemia. These two amazing ingredients work together to restore body energy and increases the infection fighting stamina.

    These are only a few of the numerous benefits of turmeric. One simply cannot leave the topic without mentioning the amazing benefits of turmeric tea. Tea with turmeric, either fresh brewed or out of a dried tea pack, can leave long lasting impacts on a person’s health and the skin.

    Here are a few of its amazing effects:

    • It helps in the fading of acne scars.
    • It helps to cleanses and detoxifies the blood, thus leaving the skin fresh and healthy.
    • It works as a preventive measure against skin disease attacks, Gingivitis, Alzheimer disease, cholesterol and diabetic complications.
    • It is very beneficial against stomach infections.
    • It helps in shedding extra pounds off the body.

    So you see, this amazing natural ingredient is an all rounder. What’s more, this turmeric acne relief remedy will not become a burden on your budget. A dried out root can easily go a long way, if you preserve and use it right

  • 17Apr


    The following five teas may not be familiar to you, but they have some great benefits that could help you shake up your morning routine. All but one of the teas listed are naturally caffeine-free, so you don’t have to worry about replacing a coffee habit with more caffeine.
    1. Nettle tea
    Nettle tea is a rich source of calcium, B-vitamins and iron. These essential nutrients serve a variety of functions, including promoting bone health, deriving energy from the food you eat, and carrying oxygen in the blood. Nettle also has anti-inflammatory properties, which may make it helpful in treating conditions like arthritis, heart disease and diabetes. Nettle tea can help increase breast milk production in new mothers with low milk supply. This tea has a mild flavor on its own, or you can blend it with green tea and peppermint.
    2. Hibiscus tea
    Made from the brilliantly colored hibiscus flowers, this tea is a rich source of the potent antioxidant vitamin C. Antioxidants are essential for neutralizing damaging free radicals. Vitamin C is also important for keeping the immune system strong and for collagen formation. In addition, some research suggests that drinking hibiscus tea may help lower blood pressure.
    3. Fennel tea
    Fennel is a carminative, meaning it helps the body get rid of gas and prevents gas formation. In other words, fennel tea is an excellent digestive aid, and indeed, drinking fennel tea (or eating fennel seeds) is a traditional remedy for indigestion. Fennel’s therapeutic effects may be due to its ability to mildly speed up movement through the digestive tract, making it especially helpful for constipation.
    4. Dandelion root tea 
    Surely everyone is familiar with dandelions, but did you know that tea made from the flower’s roots is thought to have diuretic and liver-detoxifying properties? Research indicates that dandelion root may also have anti-inflammatory activity and is a rich source of antioxidants. Serve dandelion root tea with honey and lemon.
    5. Pu-erh tea
    Pue-erh is an uncommon fermented tea made from the tea plant. Pu-erh does contain some caffeine, though in smaller amounts than other teas. The fermentation process gives this tea a unique flavor, and preliminary research indicates that pu-erh tea may lower LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglycerides while helping increase HDL (good) cholesterol. Pu-erh tea tastes delicious blended with ginger and a splash of lemon juice.
  • 16Apr

    How To: Make Your Own DIY Remedy for Spring Allergies


    The ingredients include nettle, red clover, fennel, spearmint, peppermint, eyebright, yerba santa, calendula, lemongrass, lavender and stevia.

    Each herb was added for its particular healing properties:

    • Calendula, red clover, and fennel keep mucous membranes hydrated to help ward off infection.
    • Nettle is a natural antihistamine.
    • Spearmint and peppermint help open up airways.
    • Lavender has antiseptic properties in case infection creeps in (calendula is great for this too).
    • Eyebright is helpful for a whole slew of sinus issues and especially good for hay fever.
    • Yerba santa acts as an expectorant, reducing mucous and phlegm.
    • Lemongrass and a pinch of stevia are there to help make the tea tasty.