While I wouldn’t necessarily recommend waiting till the snot runs to make yourself a batch of Echinacea Elderberry Syrup, I have to believe the urgent, very immediate necessity of said syrup combines with the healing essences of the herbs to make a more potent, thereby effective herbal concoction. Well, that’s my hope at least.
Last week was one of those weeks we crawled out of rather scraped-up and bruised. Not literally, thank goodness, but emotionally and otherwise. One of the culprits for the weary-making – a wallop of a cold that hit a few of us over the head with a mallet. It was the classic scenario in which I would normally turn to my refrigerated stash of herbal support syrups. Given that most cold remedies have been pulled off the market for wee snotty ones due to gross misuse, ineffectiveness, and fatalities, there really aren’t many alternatives to pulling your own ‘alternative’ off the shelf. That is, if you’ve had the presence of mind to get in on the shelf before the storm hits.
We didn’t, as you can clearly see, nor was my last batch back-filled. Fortunately, the process of making an herbal syrup is, like the remedy itself, gentle enough to undertake even amidst a constant stream of mucous flooding your workspace. Ahem. Pardon the visual there. Since we were lucky enough to have two clean saucepans at the ready, we decided to made two different syrups. We use Echinacea Elderberry Syrup for general immune support and for fevers, when we think of it. We also put together a Cough Syrup containing a blend of herbs I’ve been tweaking for several cold seasons now. The addition of honey makes it all palatable and the minuscule addition of brandy helps it gain some shelf-life. Almost all of this can be accomplished with a copy of Rosemary Gladstar’s Herbal Recipes for Vibrant Health, which looks to me to be the updated version of her Family Herbal that I have on my own shelves. Good quality, reliable herbs can be found many places, including Mountain Rose Herbs. May this scourge pass you by.