Ho ho home made Fire Cider for your immune system!
I hope you’re all surviving the steady slope into Christmas and sicky season. Even though it’s been unseasonably mild (come on now, I’m ready for some lovely wintery days!) we’re staying indoors more, closer to one another and sharing our germs more. Yippee!
Usually by now I’ve made my jar of Fire Cider, a glorious concoction of fresh foods which offer immune boosting and healing properties. I’m making it a bit late this year (life has gotten in the way) - it has to sit for a few weeks before you take it, it’s best to get it brewing by September really, but it can’t hurt starting now.
Taking a tablespoon of this every morning helps to prevent and shorten the duration of colds and bugs. I mean have a look at it! Even just gazing upon the jar of beauty and knowing what goes into it just makes you feel healthy doesn't it?
Take a look at what goes in it and tell me that you don’t feel you could take on the world!
GARLIC - Stimulates the production of white blood cells (immunity), and increases blood flow. Also, consuming raw garlic is bound to keep folks away from you!
ONION - Relieves allergic symptoms, also boots immune response.
GINGER - Great anti inflammatory, also amazing for gut health.
HOT CHILLIES - They’re great as decongestant and expectorant (helps to rid the body of mucus), they're also amazing for pain relief
RAW APPLE CIDER VINEGAR - Find the one containing the Mother - the gorgeous cloudy weird bits floating in it - top notch for gut health, lots of probiotics, helps reduce blood pressure and level out blood sugar spikes. If nothing else, taking a spoonful of this stuff every morning can increase your health.
THYME - The culinary herb Thyme is also a strong medicinal herb Thymus vulgaris - used in lots of cold and flu remedies, it reduces mucus production, is antiseptic and antimicrobial.
HONEY - Great to use local raw honey if you can, but any honey has antimicrobial properties
LEMONS - Or oranges really, any extra vitamin C is good at this time of year.
TURMERIC - Those who know me, know I always rave about turmeric as an anti inflammatory, great for body aches, painful joints etc.
YOU’LL ALSO NEED A 1 LITRE OPEN NECK JAR WITH A NON METAL LID, the acid from the vinegar can rust any metal. Give it a good wash and dry, then pop it in the oven for 10 mins at 200C to sterilise it (obviously remove any rubber seals first - I made that mistake years ago!) In theory you probably don’t need to sterilise the jar as the acid from the vinegar should kill any bugs, but I always like to be a bit safe.
The amounts I used are as follows -
1 Large yellow/white onion
4-5 large cloves of garlic
3-4 tablespoons on fresh ginger - grated
1-2 chillies - think about the heat that you can tolerate, don’t use scotch bonnets if you’re not a fan of spicy foods
1 Tablespoon of dried Turmeric (if you can find fresh Turmeric root this is better, but dried will be totally fine)
Enough apple cider vinegar to fill the jar you have - around a litre.
Chop your solid ingredients up roughly, whack them through a food processor if its easier, remember the smaller the pieces are, the more good stuff comes out of them!
Pop it all into your jar and pour the vinegar over it.
Store at room temperature and give it a shake every day - leave it out where you see it so you don’t forget about it.
It needs to steep for 3-4 weeks for maximum strength, 2 weeks will have some effect though.
After this length of time, add some of your honey to taste, a couple of tablespoons should do it, but a bit more is totally fine. Then strain the solids out and decant your concoction into smaller sterilised bottles and store them in a cool dark place.
Help yourself to a spoonful every morning to keep bugs away, and a decent shot of it if you’re starting to feel like a cold is on its way. It’s also really tasty when used as a salad dressing or tossed over boiled baby potatoes - try it!
So there you have it! Get brewing and you could get through winter with nary a sniffle - imagine that!