Tinctures are produced by extracting medicinal constituents of herbs in alcohol. They are more potent and longer lasting when compared with preparations that are water based such as decoctions and infusions.
You will need the following ingredients:
- 30g dried herbs
- 400 ml of brandy
- 170 ml water
- Bruise the herb and mix the water and spirit together
- Place the herbs in a large jar and add the water and spirit
- Leave to stand in a cool dry place for only 2 weeks. Make sure that you shake the jar daily.
- After the 2 weeks, strain through a muslin cloth and pour the liquid in a sterilized glass bottle.
- Make sure that you label the bottles with the name of the tincture, the dosage and use and also the date.
The standard dose is 1 to 3 tablespoons daily. For gargles and washes however, it is important to dilute 1 tablespoon in 1 cup of water.
Tinctures are able to preserve themselves indefinitely.
Herbs ought to be gathered the moment the specific plant portion reaches the top of its healing power.
- Leaves and stems – before the plant blooms. harvest in the morning as soon as the dew has disappeared but before the sun’s rays evaporates the oils.
- Flowers – before they reach full bloom.
- Fruits and berries – when they become ripe.
- Roots and rhizomes – in the autumn as the leaves begin to change color, when the plants’ sap has returned down.
- Barks and twigs – early in the year as the first leaves appear and the plants’ sap is rising.
Infusions are one of the prominent herbal preparations. The main difference between an infusion and a simple herbal tea is in time and quantity.
- An ordinary herbal teas is made with 1-2 teaspoons of herbs per cup and brewed for a few minutes.
- Infusions are made with 1-2 tablespoons of dried herbs per 1 liter of water and brewed for several hours or even overnight.
How To Prepare An Infusion
When making them, it is advisable to infuse each and every herb on its own instead of mixing the different herbs together.
I like to use a container that has a tight lid because it retains the essence. When compared to a teapot, a container that has a tight lid is much better because it retains the essence. Jars that come with a screw top are the best and especially if they are warmed first.
You should first of all place a cup of herbs into a 1 liter jar and seal tightly after filling to the top with water that is boiling. You should leave this to brew for around 4 hours for leaf infusions and 2 hours for flower infusions. Once you are done with brewing, make sure that you strain off the liquid well on a muslin cloth by pressing out the last drops and pouring them into a jar or bottle.