Category Archives: Potions

Herbal Ferments Circle – Meeting 1

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I had a great time last night, meeting a large bunch of Urban Herbies at Brouwerij t’Ij (the windmill brewery in Oost). We talked about making Mead from herbs, honey and water and also about brewing a strange microbial tea loving symbiosis called Kombucha. We also tasted my Rosehip and Lavender Mead, which I set up last November and virtually forgot about since then. It can’t have been too bad as the bottle is now empty! Looking back at my notes, I see that it also contained Peppermint.. Umm!

Several of the group went home with strange slimey icecube shaped SCOBYs. Here is the link to my post about how to brew Kombucha and what some people feel it is good for.

Brouwerij t'Ij UrbanHerbology Mead Kombucha

Now to the Mead! Inspired by fermenting comradeship, I took to the woods this morning and harvested some Meadowsweet (Filpendula ulminaria). You will see it looking pale cream and frothy in the photo above. It’s rather overexposed (sorry Grainne!) but I hope you get the idea. Now is the optimal time to harvest the flowering tops of this plant. If you are lucky and find it (canalsides, damp areas, lake edges etc), then as ever be thoughtful, and harvest only a tiny fraction of the plant. You don’t need much anyway for this recipe – in fact you don’t need any! I chose to add Meadowsweet today because the common English name of the plant is said to be linked to the delightful flavour it gives to Mead. I suspect that those frothy cream flowers are also home to many micrscopic yeasts, to get the mead fermentation off to a great start.

I also added one flowering top of Hyssop (Hyssopus officinalis) a beautiful tall waterside purple flowering Lamiaceae family member. This herb is catching my eye all over town at the moment and I fancied seeing how the flavour develops in my Mead.  As I reached home from this forage, I just couldn’t resist snipping off a sprig of outrageously aromatic Rosemary (Rosemarinus officinalis) from my geveltuin (pavement garden). It is on top form at the moment, due to the long awaited summer heat.

So the three herbs chopped up and added to the Mead pot (it’s a simply a 2 Litre Fido pickling jar from Blokker with a tea towel and elastic band over the top).  I only had a quarter jar of honey in the house today so I added that and about 2 jars of water to the mix. So now I have a handfull of fresh chopped herbs steeping in honey water. That is how mead begins. As things get going I’ll add more honey and more water but I look forward to seeing how this batch turns out.

Mead rosehips and herbs

Now we talked last night about getting wild yeast fermented Mead “going” by adding a tiny sprinkling of a culinary or winemaking yeast. I have a big packet of Champagne yeast somewhere at home, purchased from BrouwMarkt.nl (a great company in Almere which sells everything for home brewers). Unfortunately I can’t find the Champagne yeast at the moment so I have decided to stick with Sandor Ellix Katz truely wild fermented Mead method of stirring vigorously every time I pass by the Mead jar. This should aerate the mixture and where there is air, there is yeast, so things should get going of their own accord. I shall continue to do this until I notice a sort of froth at the top or some other change in the contents of the jar. Then I’ll move onto the next phase.

Sandor Katz is a true Wild Fermentation Activist and is easy to find online, inspires an active Facebook group, has published several outstanding books and has a resource rich website.  Thanks Suzanne for posting the link to this video on the Urban herbology Facebook group today…


For phase two I’ll place the young mead in a 2 litre green glass demijohn with a water airlock and rubber bung to keep out other bugs. My demijohn and airlock are from Brouwmarkt. They are very well priced and extremely convenient for brewing in small spaces which may not be dark. That’s as far as my last experiment went. I then simply syphoned off a bottle full of the result yesterday evening to take along to the meeting. I should apparently have paid closer attention to it all and bottled the Mead when the bubbling ceased early this year and either drank it soon after or left it in the bottles to mature. No matter, the result was drinkable and I am keen to continue my experiments.

I’m mentally planning our next Herbal Ferments Circle for the Jenever Distillery at the top of Flevopark (near the end of tram 14). If you have been exprimenting with ferments, even if only mentally, then get in touch and perhaps join us next time. I’d love to hear what you have been making or planning, if you did come along last night or not! I’m now calling it a Fermentation Circle because we seem to make more than just one brew. Yesterday there was talk of Idly, Tempeh, Sourdough, Gingerbeer plants, Kefir and far more. It’s amazing what people get up to when they get the chance! For me the focus will mainly be on Mead because that is very exciting to me – so many herbal possibilities, so simple to make, so historic, so tasty and it relies on my favourite potion ingredient – honey.

 

Urban Brewing Circles

Two new groups: Mead Circle and Kombucha Circle

MEAD CIRCLE

Elderflower infused honey: A great ingredient for home made Mead.
Elderflower infused honey: A great ingredient for home made Mead.

I love to drink a little Mead (fermented honey based drink) now and then but find that most available options in Amsterdam are quite expensive and are not as exciting as I know they could be. I bought a 75cl bottle of De Traay Heather Honey Mead, from Ecoplaza this week. It tasted good but it set me back a cool 15 Euro!

I would like to start a free Mead Circle as a way to encourage myself and others to brew their own, here in Amsterdam (and elsewhere, if they fancy joining by VoIP). Some other people must already be doing this close by and it would be great to hear from them.

Making mead is quite simple. It is simply the alcoholic fermentation of the sugars in honey water. The yeast can be captured from the air or can be inoculated from a known culture. It is likely to have been the first alcoholic beverage that humankind enjoyed as it is made quite naturally, when water and honey mix and sit for a while in a yeast rich atmosphere. It is less complex than the home brewing of wine but requires similar apparatus for reliable results. We have a great resource close to Amsterdam: Brouwmarkt.nl in Almere, which sells all the fermenting apparatus you could wish for and delivers for a reasonable price. Mead making is fun and allows you to experiment with all sorts of herbal flavours. I really want to start experimenting more with it and would love to occasionally meet for a chat and tasting session with some other like minded people. As ever, I am interested in experimenting in a very small kitchen. I don’t have space for massive vats of bubbling concoctions but I do have space for a 2 liter container for example and that is enough for making mead!

If you would like to join the Urban Herbology Mead Circle then please email me (lynn.shore@gmail.com) or post a comment here. Let me know when the best meeting times and areas are for you. When a small group has emerged, I will set a date and we can start meeting and sharing.

KOMBUCHA CIRCLE

The amazing world of SCOBY fermentation, in a 2 litre pickling jar from Blokker.
The amazing world of SCOBY fermentation, in a 2 litre pickling jar from Blokker.

Years ago, I bought a 4cm x 4cm chunk of Kombucha SCOBY from a company in the UK (for 10 Pounds!). It arrived in a tiny package of Kombucha vinegar and I intrepidly set it up in a large jar of sweet green tea, nestled in a corner of a warm cupboard. Since then, that tiny SCOBY has provided me with gallons of tasty Kombucha drink and also useful Kombucha vinegar. The SCOBY is a symbiosis of a specific yeast and bacteria. They live in a sort of fermenting harmony, and their sole mission in life seems to be transforming the sugar in sweet tea into a mild effervescent very lightly alcoholic drink (resembling a green tea flavoured real Ginger beer). If you leave it to brew for longer it makes vinegar. A lot of people seem to like drinking real Kombucha. I receive a steady trickle of requests from people who want to exchange one of my SCOBYs for herbs, chocolate or other wonderful things! My original SCOBY quickly grew into what we call a Kombucha mother and she now doubles her size one a fortnight or so. When this happens she sheds another SCOBY and these can be shared with other people.

Here are my instructions on how to make it.

Many of the people who have received my baby SCOBYs, send me photos and questions about their development (or otherwise!). I would like to start a Kombucha Circle to help link up those people and so that we can meet once in a blue moon to share recipes, experiences and advice. Some of the people that I have met through Kombucha, live in other parts of the world. Anyone with an interest in Kombucha is welcome to join. we can try some VoIP time to help those in distant lands share with us here in Amsterdam.

If you would like to join the Urban Herbology Kombucha Circle then please email me (lynn.shore@gmail.com) or post a comment here. Let me know when the best meeting times and areas are for you. When a small group has emerged, I will set a date and we can start meeting and sharing.

Valerian Amasake Hot Chocolate

Amazake is a traditional Japanese fermented rice drink or pudding, which is incredibly easy to make – provided you have access to some Koji (rice grains, inoculated with the fungus Aspergillus oryzae). We in Amsterdam are incredibly fortunate to have Deshima Freshop on Weeteringschaanscircuit, which sells biodynamic quality Koji.

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I was teaching some of my apprentices how to make Amazake yesterday and consequently had lots in stock today. It keeps well in the fridge for a couple of days but I rarely manage to leave it that long – it just tastes so good!

You may know that I love the taste of chocolate and that I grow Valerian on my roof terrace. Valerian is currently in flower, I need a good night’s sleep and I wanted to use up some of the Amazake. Hence the outcome of that combination – Valerian Amazake Hot Chocolate. Umm.

How to make Amasake
1. Cook 2 cups of rinsed basmati rice (or similar) in 4 cups of water (lid on pan), until the rice is well cooked, fluffy and has absorbed all of the water (adjust water proportion if using different rice). Remove from heat.

2. Set the rice aside (lid on) until it cools to a temperature that is easily tolerated by your finger (60°C is optimal).

3. Now gently stir 1/2 cup of dried Koji (innoculated rice) into the warm cooked rice.

4. Put the lid on again and wrap the pan in a couple of clean tea towels or simply place it in your oven (cool and turned off). This is to maintain some of the warmth so that the Aspergillus can grow at a reasonable rate. Less heat = less fermentation. Too much heat = dead Aspergillus so no fermentation.

5. Leave it to ferment for 12-24 hours. Stir the rice and Koji mixture very occasionally. It will become progressively more runny and sweet to taste as the fermentation proceeds and the Aspergillus beaks down the rice starches into sugar.

6. When the sweetness of the Amazake is to your liking (max 24 hours) boil it to stop the Aspergillus from growing further. This is an important step to avoid fermentation turning the rice starch into alcohol (even in the fridge this fermentation will slowly occur).

7. I like to blend my Amazake at this point, or just before boiling. I use my little electric hand blender. You may prefer the natural consistency. Both taste as good. Allow to cool before refrigerating or eat warm as soon as prepared.

8. Use as a pudding, sprinkle in ground ginger, cardamon, cinnamon or drizzle with honey. Eat hot or cold. Thin with water to your preferred drink consistency or spoon it to eat. Use in place of yoghurt or buttermilk in muffin recipes and similar. Uses for Amazake as a natural sweetener are almost endless.

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Valerian Amazake Hot Chocolate
1. Pour just less than a mug full of Amazake into a small saucepan.
2. Add a splash of water, a sprinkling of tiny fresh Valerian flowers (about 10) and 1 – 1 1/2 teaspoons of cacao powder.
3. Stir gently as you bring the mixture to the boil.
4. Simmer for a minute or two and then allow to cool to a comfortable temperature before pouring into the mug.
5. Enjoy!

The king of fermentation is Sandor Ellix Katz. He has done a great job in teaching people how different fermented foods can be made. Please visit his website and buy his wonderful books if you have even a passing interest in fermented foods.

Elderflower honey

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Today was a beautiful day to harvest Elderflowers from local trees. Here is one of the simplest and tastiest ways to preserve this delight of the hedgerows and it keeps for as long as you like. This can be used instead of Elderflower syrup. To make a delicious drink, pour a small amount into a glass and top up with still or sparkling water.

Elderflower Honey can be made by filling a clean glass jar with freshly picked fragrant Elderflowers (do check as you are about to pick, some smell distinctly unpleasant 🙂 and then filling the jar again with organic runny honey.

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Prod with a chopstick for a while, to release any trapped air then top up to the brim with more honey. Securely lid, label and leave to infuse for as long as you like in a kitchen cuboard or similar place.

After just an hour or so, you’ll have a deliciously fragranced honey suitable for deserts or just eating from the spoon as I do. But if you can bear to wait three days or a week, you’ll have something close to nectar. So simple, so tasty and so useful.

When you pick Elderflowers, gather them into a paper bag if possible, being careful to take the precious pollen home with you. Nip them cleanly from the tree as whole sprays of flowers. I use my thumbnails to do this usually or a small pair of kitchen scissors. When you get them home, lay them face down (stalks up) on a white surface for a while to allow bugs to climb out from the flowers. Here you can see some of today’s harvest drying breifly on my Willow rack. I tend to harvest some Elderflowers to dry completely for winter cold and flu remedies but most of my harvest is eaten freshly or turned into sweet treats and drinks. Elderflower honey is the perfect base for many of these recipes and is far more simple than making a sugar syrup. If you are vegan or just don’t want to use honey, you could infuse a vegetable syrup such as oat syrup or agave syrup in the same way. Honey has the added benefits of being a medicine in itself and keeps indefinately is stored well, so preseving herbs in honey is my logical choice. Be aware that honey may contain Botulism spores which can be lethal to children under one year of age (their immature immune systems are not equipt to fight Botulism).

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I’m currently working on a vegetarian Elderflower Jelly recipe, using my infused honey. I’ll post the recipe soon for you to try out. If you want to be ready for it then set up a pot of Elderflower honey tomorrow, as above and keep your eyes open for Agar agar powder in Chinese grocers or for the organic option, visit Deshima Freshop (on Weteringschaanscircuit). My Handbook of Urbanherbology methods is almost complete and the final herb jelly recipe will be in there.

Let’s Make Hawthorn Tincture!

What a perfect day!

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I finally found time this morning to have a leisurely wander through the woods of Frankendael, seeking out the most pleasantly scented Hawthorn (Crataegus monogyna) trees.

I was not disappointed! The flowers and leaves of this heart toning tree always taste good to me. Munched on a late spring walk, not much else lifts my spirits and makes me stand tall as does Hawthorn “bread and cheese”. But the flowers (the cheese) do vary in their tastiness, so if you want to capture their essence, it’s worth taking time to seek out the ones which really appeal to you.

Some of the flowers smell rather unpleasant, like cat pee, others are unscented because their insect-attracting job is done. Just a couple smelled sweetly, really sweetly, like vanilla rice pudding. Those smelled and tasted jaw-droppingly good! So guess which ones ended up in my tincture jar?

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Equipt with a small bottle of vodka and a little glass jar, I made my tincture at the tree. To do it yourself, simply fill a jar well with carefully picked Hawthorn flower clusters and a few Hawthorn leaves (the bread). Then fill the jar again with vodka, brandy or whatever strong spirit you choose. Check that you fill all the way to the brim. Flowers exposed to any air will quickly spoil, they need to be completely submerged in the spirit. Check for bubbles of air and top up if needed.

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I’ll leave my tincture like this, labelled, in a cupboard until the autumn, when I’ll strain the flowers and pour the liquid over a fresh jar of Hawthorn berries. Then after a further six weeks of infusing, my double Hawthorn tincture will be ready for use. It will be infused with the properties of Hawthorn leaves, flowers and berries.

If a regular few drops of that doesn’t warm, tone and open my heart through the depths of winter, then not much will!

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I could use the simple flower tincture after six weeks infusion time but I have enough Hawthorn elixir in stock, to see me through summer and autumn so I shall wait. And we all know that the best things come to those who wait 🙂

Hawthorn is an age old preventaive and remedy for many types of heart disease. It is a heart tonic, offering as it were, food specific to the heart. It is used by many, alongside allopathic (conventional drug based) medicine such as betablockers but of course you should always consult a qualified medical herbalist if considering using it as a remedy for heart disease.

If you’d like to join me for a walk in the park, to learn about tasty and useful plants of Amsterdam, and to set up you’re poem tincture, why not sign up for tomorrow’s lunchtime forage?

Urban Dandelion and Burdock

Europe is awash with roaring Dandelions at the moment. They are standing proud and showing their wooly faces in parks, along roadsides, in fields and hedgerows. They also grow happily on my roof (and from there I harvest its leaves and roots) .

I love the taste of Dandelion and Burdock syrup, especially when mixed with water and drunk in the summer sunshine. Not many flavours remind me so fondly of my English childhood. But to make Dandelion and Burdock syrup, the roots of Burdock and leaves of Dandelion should be collected and boiled up with sugar water. I don’t use using sugar unless there is no other option and I don’t dig up Burdock roots. Roots tend to concentrate toxins, they are tough to dig up, fellow park visitors may pounce on me and tell me to stop and most of all, I’d like the plants to grow to maturity so that I may harvest the seeds and leaves.

Regarding the Dandelion leaves, I don’t ever harvest them in quantity from Amsterdam public spaces. They live on the plants for a long time, they get walked on and everything else you may like to think of happens on them, whereas the flowers are far more transient. I can more easily see if they are dirty, they only stay on the plant for a short time so are less open to pollution and I just love the sight of them in a jar of honey! Having said this, harvesting herbs from ground level in public spaces is always a bit of a risk, pollution is everywhere. But with syrups, a small amount is consumed in one go, the use of honey kills many bugs naturally and I feel that the benefits far outweigh the concerns. But that’s just me perhaps!

My version of Dandelion and Burdock simply requires honey, 20-30 fresh Dandelion flowers and a small Burdock leaf. That’s all. It has all the medicinal properties that Dandelion and Burdock plants offer, it is quick to make, tastes deliciously bitter-sweet and it keeps well.

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How to make Urban Dandelion and Burdock Syrup

1. Harvest 20-30 clean, fresh and lively Dandelion heads from a clean area.
Harvest one young, equally vibrant Burdock leaf from a super-healthy looking plant.

2. Place your harvest on a clean white surface for about an hour, to allow any resident bugs time to crawl away.

3. Tear up the Burdock leaf and layer dandelion heads and burdock leaf in a medium sized (250ml) jam jar.

4. As you layer the herb, carefully spoon in runny honey. Poke around a little with a clean chopstick so that air bubbles are released.

5. Continue to layer herb, spoon in honey and prod with the chopstick until the jar is full.

6. Check for obvious air bubbles and prod some more. Top up with honey (right to the lid) and secure with a well fitting lid.

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7. Leave to stand and infuse for at least three days.

8. Use as it is, as a toast spread or strain (or not) and use as a syrup base for refreshing summer drinks.

Bitter-sweet yum! It taste’s of the English summers of my childhood. We’ll try it on the Pluck Your Lunch! forage this Sunday

Contaminated Marshmallow Root

Update: Government tests show the Jacob Hooy batch of Marshmallow Root (sold from September 2012 to now) contains ATROPINE. They ask that this message be spread to people who are likely to use the root, either loose, in bags, or in mixed blends from Jacob Hooy. Many people will have it on their shelves unopened and should be warned. It will be announced online and in newspapers today. Jacob Hooy have the batch numbers. Contact them if unsure of safety of batches you have. Contact below number about poisons, contact me or the link below to report any problems you may have had with the root over the past 4 months.

One of my apprentices purchased Marshmallow root (Althea officinalis, Heemstwortel) from a local herb outlet in Amsterdam this weekend and spent Saturday night in hospital, along with her boyfriend after they made a straightforward milk decoction of the root and suffered the following symptoms:

Delirium
Irregular heart beat
Blurred vision
Dilated pupils
General malaise
Confusion
Loss of memory
Some nausea
Lack of bodily coordination

They are now at home recovering further from a marshmallow hot chocolate that gave more than they anticipated.

After investigation it appears that they are not alone. Someone else, completely unrelated, purchased the same herb from a different shop and had the same symptoms this weekend. Marshmallow root is seen as a safe herb, apart from potentially interfering with blood sugar levels in those with diabetes, it has no history of toxicity. The batch of herb appears to be contaminated and the Dutch food safety agency is now on the case and looking for the original source, what the contaminant actually is and how it came to be in the shops.

Please, if you have any at home which you have purchased recently in the Netherlands and have not yet tested, wait with using it until the above questions have been answered. I love this herb and eat it and decoct it regularly as part of my diet. My toddler also enjoys it now and again. I know many of you also like to use it in your families in similar ways.

Here is a link to the form that can be used to contact the Dutch food safety agency directly if needed:

http://formdesk.minlnv.nl/kcdv/Warenklachten_vragen_formulier_v5

If you are worried about poisoning at any time, here is the number for the Dutch Poisons Helpline:

030 274 8888

They would like to know urgently if anyone else has experienced similar problems after using the root. I’ll put my marshmallow root recipes back on line when the issue is resolved.

A Witch’s Dozen – 365 day 192

Thank you to everyone who braved the autumnal weather and joined me this evening for the Witch’s Dozen herb walk through the woods of Park Frankendael and the gathering afterwards in Merkelbach. Ten weatherproof women and two mini foragers, joined me for a seasonal walk through the woods as day turned to dusk then night. Merkelbach was a lovely place to end the full moon day.

Here’s my photo of the day, a little shaky and wet after the Witch’s dozen walk. I hope it gives the idea anyway.

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Flying ointment recipes were mentioned. I found many different recipes whilst researching for the walk but the one written here, seemed the best without being full of plants which we all know are highly toxic. Traditional recipes seem to have included herbs such as belladonna, datura, mandrake, opium poppy, water hemlock, monkshood, foxglove, Balm of Giliad (balsam of poplar trees), calamus root, cannabis, clary sage, dittany of Crete, mugwort, tansy, wormwood, and yarrow.

If you’d like to seriously look into the magical tradition of flying then perhaps take a look at this blog entry by The Witch of Forest Grove. It is nicely detailed.

I’m not one for the seriously toxic ingredients so kept hunting until I found the following recipe. It was posted on the wisewomanforum by a woman called Lady Belladonna in 2004 and she seemed to have had fun with it. All the ingredients grow locally although vervain probably resides indoors at this time of year in Amsterdam. I can’t recall where she said that she got the recipe from or if she concocted it herself, so I’m calling it…

Lady Belladonna’s Flying Ointment

1/4 cup grated beeswax
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 tsp. of each of the following herbs, dried:
cinquefoil
vervain
mugwort
thistle
1 tsp ash (recipe called for chimney soot – LB used her own mix of ash from a marijuana joint mixed with a dried leaf of Diviner’s Sage – “more fun getting this together than cleaning out a chimney!”)
1/2 tsp of benzoin powder
1/2 tsp of clove oil

Combine the beeswax and olive oil in a double boiler and melt over low heat. Finely powder the herbs in your mortar and pestle. When beeswax and oil is melted, add in the herbs, benzoin and clove oil. Stir clockwise, empowering with your intent or saying whatever charm or spell you wish. LB also added a couple drops of sandalwood oil for the fragrance. Simmer gently for about 10 minutes, strain through cheesecloth into a heatproof jar, and let cool.
Apply and Fly!

Throat lozenges are child’s play

A perfect herbal activity for a drizzly morning when you have to stay inside for some reason – making Honey and Slippery Elm Throat Lozenges! My daughter and I, really love eating these first thing in the morning, or at any time when we have signs of a cold, sore throat or any other excuse.

Here she is, happily making her own lozenges. Not sure if it was the end result she was most happy about, or being able to eat the mixture…

We covered this recipe during the Herbs and Honey Workshop in August. They are super-simple to make. You’ll need to obtain slippery elm powder (Ulmus fulva) from a herbal supplier. I beleive that Jacob Hooy sell it in town, otherwise it can be ordered online. Or if you are desperate for just a cup or it and you live in Amsterdam, I’ll sell you some of my stock. Slippery Elm is a useful food supplement which is very soothing to the intestines and can be made into a nourishing and easily digested gruel, especially good for those recovering from illness. I often add a heaped teaspoon of the powder to my porridge in the morning.

Here’s a brief method of how to make
Honey and Slippery Elm Throat Lozenges

1. Place 1 cup Slippery Elm powder in a large mixing bowl and if desired, add a teaspoon of extra herb powders (marshmallow root and horehound are my favorites) or of licquorice tincture, to enhance the throat soothing action.
2. Use a wooden spoon or spatula to work in about 6 dripping tablespoons of good quality runny honey. You are looking for a very thick paste/dough consistency. It’s easier to add more honey to get this right, than to add more powder if you make it too runny at first.
3. Roll out the dough on a Slippery Elm powdered surface.
4. Cut the dough into tiny shapes or roll it into fine sausages and then nip off small lozenge shapes or the dough. I like to make tiny pyramids from the dough, my daughter prefers the shapes.
5. Place in an airtight container and toss them in a little more slippery elm powder, to prevent them sticking together.
6. Store in the container, in a cool and dry place for up to ten years. They are unlikely to remain uneaten for that long.

365 Frankendael day 150

Thank you to the group of Urban Herbies who joined me For the Elder Workshop today. We harvested Elderberries, Elder leaves and Elder branches. We learned about and concocted Elderberry syrup and numerous other Elder based remedies. I had a lot of fun with you all, and the plants!

I was so busy enjoying the time that I forgot to take an Elder photo so here’s one of the syrup that we made together, from freshly pressed Elderberry juice and honey… It’s a clean but scrappy looking jam jar. That doesn’t matter as my portion of the syrup will be wolfed down very quickly!

As well as Elderberries, there are heaps of ripe Hawthorn berries in the city hedgerows at present. I did remember to take a photo of one such tree. It’s time to try out the Hawthorn recipes, kindly sent to me by one of the Amstel walkers earlier this year.

Here’s a link to the recipe for the Banana bread I baked for the workshop. I added a finely chopped 20cm Ginger plant leaf and I forgot to add the dates. All fine though!

Here’s a link to that information about recent scientific research supporting the use of Ghee and Honey impregnated wound dressings for serious wound recovery.

Thanks Nathaniel and Jade for sharing with us how the Native Americans revere their local Elder species. Here’s a link with a little information about that (at the end). Here’s a link with lots of information about Elder, particularly the US growing species. Not much about the indigenous people but lots of useful stuff.

Here’s a link to one of my mentors: Glennie Kindred in Britain. She wrote the hand sewn books I showed you today. We looked at the one called Sacred Tree in which Glennie lays out her interpretation of the Tree Ogham.

As we talked about honey, Katja shared her latest concoction – fresh ginger infused honey with lemon juice. Yum! I’ll be trying that very soon and will post some photos to brighten up the autumn. Maybe Katja has a photo of hers already?

Cindy, I don’t think you took your portion of ointment and certainly not the syrup. I also forgot to give you the Kombucha so let me know when you have time to collect them.

Thanks again everyone. See you again soon! xx