By Paris Wolfe, Blogmaster, The Herb Society of America
I have a simple resolution … to be happy, healthy and good. And, as I blogged in August – during a summer cold — I’ve developed a three-part philosophy to include herbal wellness practices in my lifestyle. To remain free of disease, I vowed to
- Identify immune system-boosting measures and supplements from the herbal world. Add them to my routine.
- Learn about herb-based treatments for symptoms. Use them when appropriate.
- Seek modern medicine when deemed necessary.
In my research, I came across the folk preventative/remedy known as “fire cider.” Herbalist Rosemary Gladstar is credited with the modern incarnation of this immune booster. While it’s not a cure-all, I needed it in my kitchen.
The base — apple cider vinegar – is usually infused with some combination of garlic, onion, ginger, honey, horseradish, hot peppers and herbs. The resulting concoction is then taken in small doses, mixed into vinaigrettes or otherwise added to food for daily consumption. It is claimed to boost the immune system, address cold symptoms and enhance digestion.
I decided to whip up a batch. So, I purchased $20-plus worth of ingredients. Then, I returned books to the library, met a half-dozen deadlines, went to Florida on a story assignment. You guessed it, my horseradish hardened, the pomegranates withered and my best laid plans faded.
My mission remained. So I bought immune-boosting Flaming Cider (same idea, different name) from Field Apothecary in New York. To learn more about its properties, I interviewed maker Dana Eudy.
She’s been making Flaming Cider as she calls her product for the past seven years. To create her immune tonic, she infuses a biodynamic local apple cider vinegar with ginger, cayenne, horseradish, onion, herbs and local raw honey.
Eudy not only sells the product, she uses it. “I use it to enhance my immune response. If I have a cold coming I take it three times a day,” she says. “It’s great to break up congestion. Some people use it for digestive health, too.”
The flavor, says Eudy, is unique spicy sour mix. “It’s very palatable. I like to experiment cooking with it. I add it to guacamole, cole slaw, roasted veggies, potato salad and even flaming cider margaritas.”
If only I were so creative. I’m more inclined to drip it into a small glass of water and drink my dose. When I remember.
And, my journey to stay healthy continues. For more information on Flaming Cider visit Field Apothecary.