A herbal syrup is simply a maceration, infusion, decoction or tincture where maple syrup, vegetable glycerine or honey has been added to give it a sweeter thicker taste and texture. This form is ideal for children. It is also perfect for making a sore throat or cough mixture where you want to coat the throat. This form is not suitable for diabetics.
Onion & Garlic Syrup (for coughs, colds and general immunity):
1. Add to food processor, blender or hand blend: raw – onions, garlic, horseradish, chilli and ginger root.
2. Cover with vegetable glycerine, honey or maple syrup.
3. Add 2 tablespoons of lemon juice.
4. Store in jar in the fridge and use by the spoon!
Red Elderberry Syrup (anti-viral ‘winter’ family tonic)
These are the red-wine coloured berries of elderberry that can be found all over Britain in September and October.
1. Collect when fully ripe and do not use mouldy berries – remove these.
2. Place elderberries in a jar and gently push down with a spoon.
3. Cover the berries with vegetable glycerine one inch above and keep covered. Inspect each day to see if it needs topping up with glycerine. Do not let the glycerine levels go down as toxins can develop on the surface.
4. Keep in direct sunlight for 3 weeks then strain. Keep refrigerated and use by the spoon!
Why are tinctures kept in the dark but macerations in the light?
Tinctures do better in the dark due to alcohol content. Alcohol is very stripping in itself. Macerations do better in the light because the sun is an extracting method and not as harsh as alcohol. The alcohol is used because it can strip all the active content from the plant/herb.
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