Friday, February 19, 2010

On[un] ~ Syrup and other Wild Concoctions

I woke up this morning with that feeling in my throat that I had recently heard (throat clearingly) in others nearby and thought, My un~syrup, I went to the fridge and poured out the last of it, then made some fresh.
On Syrup
I use 1/3 roughly cubed onion (I use what I need, or what I have and adjust accordingly) and enough sugar to cover it, prepare it in the ½ pint to pint jar I store it in. I leave it out for a half an hour then put it in the fridge. In a hurry, I warm it slightly so the sugar dissolves quickly, but I think the quality is slightly effected as well. You can strain the liquid and store in a dropper bottle, or just store with the onion. I do both depending on time and such
(it's the same idea as when you prepare strawberries for strawberry shortcake if you use sugar.) If you do not use sugar, it can be prepared by cubing the onion and boiling it.
I have heard of using honey, but have not done that myself. I have soaked garlic cloves in honey as Susun Weed explained in one of her videos on You Tube. I didn't like taking by spoonful(but this could be the quality of honey I had). She recommended it for preventative and oncoming ills. I used it as a facial when I started getting a break out and it worked exceptionally well! I also used it on the souls of my feet and it softened them very nicely.
There are also some great teas. Breath Easy by Traditional Medicinal [caution, it's strong], but the ingredients can be found easily. I also found an interesting homemade throat lozenge on You Tube by Herb Mentor or Mountain Rose Herbs. It had the same kind of ingredients.
The following are ingredient in the Breathe Easy Tea;
Licorice root
bitter fennel fruit
Bi Yan Pian dry Aqueous extract(I don't use when I make my own)
peppermint leaf
Calendula flower

Pleurisy root {Asclepias tuberosa, common from Canada southwards, growing from Ontario to Minnesota, most abundantly southward and southwestward, is known popularly as Pleurisy Root, from its medicinal use. Its stem forms an exception to Asclepias in general, by being almost or entirely devoid of the acrid milky juice containing caoutchouc, that distinguishes the rest of the genus and has gained them the name of Milkweeds.
---Description---It is a handsome, fleshy rooted, perennial plant, growing 1 to 1 1/2foot high and bearing corymbs of deep yellow and orange flowers in September. When cultivated, it does not like being disturbed, and prefers good peat soil.
The rootstock, the part used medicinally, is spindle-shaped and has a knotty crown, slightly but distinctly annulate, the remainder longitudinally wrinkled.
The dried root as found in commerce is usually in cut or broken pieces of variable size, 1 to 6 inches long and about 3/4 inch in thickness, externally pale orange-brown, becoming greyish-brown when kept long, internally whitish. It is tough and has an uneven fracture; the broken surface is granular; that of the bark is short and brittle. The wood is yellowish, with large white medullary rays. The drug is almost inodorous, but has a bitterish and disagreeable, somewhat acrid taste.}
ginger rhizome(root)
I also love French Onion Soup. I cut the onion longwise in rings, fry them in a splash of olive oil until soft, pour just enough brags liquid aminios (about a liberal tablespoon) add a clove of garlic, let cook just a few moments, add enough water to cover, (as you do for potatoes for mashing), and let cook 20 minutes. I make crutons as I am waiting, toast with parmesan for dipping. YUM~~~
My other task this morning was infusing my dandelion leaves. I can't wait for the end of the day to have some. I am a lover of the little lions since I was a small child. There was a fable about the lion of the dandelion that I don't remember lucidly, but tacitly. I want to research it, but I kind of like the childhood fables from my life that are remembered like a dream. It makes it fantastic!
Happy things and what a glorious day!

Disclaimer; this is my blog for referencing. I am not a professional obviously and am only referencing and sharing some of the wonders I have found in the garden. They help me, but I still see my doctor when I feel ill. She gets a giggle and a gaggle when she listens to my medicine cupboard inventory.

I also like cherry bark syrup when I need it.


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Banana This; Recycle Old Peels~ fertilizer or silver polish

There are things you can do with that old peel.

1. Do you have a green thumb? House hold plants and outside gardens require fertilization. A great way to give your plants nutrients is with a banana peel. The banana peel is very rich in potassium and phosphorus, which give that added boost to your plants soil, especially so with roses. Here is how to use a banana peel to fertilizer your soil for your plants. Remove the peel from the banana. Place the banana peel on a cookie sheet to let it air dry. Grab a paper bag or envelope. Crumble the dried banana peel and place it in the bag. Let the banana sit at room temperature for about two days. When your caring for your plant, give it a potassium treat of crumbled banana peel. Mix well in the soil to ensure the roots are fed evenly.
2. Have you been thinking about pulling out that old silver? Well there is no time like the present. Bananas peel can also be used to polish silver. Yes, polish silver. Take the old peels and place them in a blender. You want the peels to become smooth and creamy. Once they have, grab a cloth and small amounts of the creamed banana peel and begin polishing your silver. The shine will be breath taking.


Wild yeasts exist in the air around you and to some extent on the wheat berries. There are wild yeasts on grapes (unsulphured) and apples and other fruits. It is those wild yeasts which are 'captured' to make a sourdough starter. The process takes from 3 to 5 days. I wish I had specific amounts for you, but you could start with 1/4 to 1/2 cup of flour and mix in enough warm (not hot) water to make a thin paste. DO NOT make it too soupy. That, in fact, is the trick to a good starter, according to the French bread makers, and I think they should know. And after you've fooled around with the flour and water thing, you might wish to branch out into adding those unsulphured grapes, apples, sour milk, etc as a catalyst in order to capture other strains of yeast. Each of these strains has a slightly different taste. In fact if you move to another area, you might end up with a starter that produces an entirely different flavor. For instance, San Francisco sourdough bread is well known and has a distinct taste due to the wild strains in the air there. On day one you mix the flour and water (and add any catalysts to encourage fermentation) and place in a warm spot. After 3 days, the dough should be moist, inflated, and slightly sour. More flour and water is added (mixed in) and left to sit in a warm spot. After 2 days the process is repeated. Then the next day it is done again. Note the order: 3 days, 2 days, 1 day. At this point you should be able to make a loaf of bread using part of the starter and adding back what you took out in the form of more flour and water. Rule of thumb: Use about 10% starter to size of loaf. In the case of a 2 lb loaf this is a bit over 3 oz of starter (3.2 to be exact). For a 1 lb loaf 1.5 oz would be used. A book that describes this process in great detail is The Village Baker by Joe Ortiz, copyright 1993, published by Ten Speed Press, Berkley CA. If it's not still in print, try the used books stores, that's where I got mine. Or try your local library. If they don't have it, they might be able to get it for you. ©2008 by Ernestina Parziale

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Have a Great Day!