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How to make herbal infused honey





Herbs and honey combine well together. You can make herb infused honey from any herbs left over from cooking or picked from your garden or foraging exploits. The herbs in the table below combine well with honey, taste good and can improve a range of health conditions. They also make lovely gifts.






How to make an infused honey


Ingredients / materials

  • Honey (a mild flavour works best)

  • Herb of choice (washed and air dried)

  • Clean, sterilised dry jars (in oven, steriliser or dishwasher) with tight fitting lids

  • Strainer

  • A stirrer

  • Clean cloth for wiping jar rims

  • Labels


Method

  • Place herb in the bottom of a sterilised jar. Usually, you need your herb to take up about a ¼ of the jar.

  • Fill with honey making sure the herb is fully submerged. Leaving a couple of centimetres at the top. Push the herb down into honey with a stirrer if needed.

  • Wipe the jar rim with a clean cloth.

  • Place the lid tightly on and turn the jar over a few times.

  • Allow the herb infuse for at least 5 days in a dry place. Rotate the jar daily. You can leave for 3-4 weeks if you want strong flavoured honey. Check daily: if the herb isn’t covered with honey, add some more.

  • Strain honey into a clean sterilised jar, seal tightly and label with the name of herb, date bottled and used by date (12 months after bottling).

  • Strained herbs can be put into tea for flavouring.

  • Infused honey is shelf stable in a cool, dark place and should be used with one year.



Herbs that make lovely infusions

Herb

Parts used

Main actions

Conditions

Safety

Cayenne

Capsicum annuum

Fruit

Circulatory stimulant, diaphoretic, spasmolytic, counterirritant, metabolic stimulant

Chilblains, circulation issues, Raynaud’s disease, fever, laryngitis, pharyngitis, arthritis, angina

Caution if peptic ulcers, gastro – oesophageal reflux. Topically, don’t use on broken skin

Chamomile

Matricaria recutita

Flowers

Carminative, spasmolytic, mild sedative, anti-inflammatory, vulnerary, diaphoretic

Insomnia, anxiety, flatulence, diarrhoea, gastrointestinal colic, irritable bowel, gastritis, colic, teething, peptic ulcers, mouth ulcers, morning / travel sickness, topically for wounds and dermatitis

Avoid if allergic

Cinnamon

Cinnamomum cassia

Bark

Antidiabetic, carminative, spasmolytic, digestive, astringent

Diabetes, insulin resistance, nausea, anorexic, diarrhoea, flatulence, colic, heartburn, colds

Seek medical advice if diabetic, pregnant, gastro – oesophageal reflux

Cloves

Syzygium aromaticum

Flower bud

Carminative, digestive, spasmolytic, analgesic, antimicrobial

Flatulence, bloating, nausea, stomach pain, toothache, bad breath, laryngitis, pharyngitis,

Intestinal worms

Seek medical advice if gastro – oesophageal reflux,

Elderflower

Sambucus nigra

Flowers

Anticatarrhal, diaphoretic

Colds, flu, bronchitis, sinusitis, hay fever, laryngitis. pharyngitis

Fennel

Foeniculum vulagre

Seeds

Antispasmodic

Indigestion, wind, bloating , stomach pain, colic

Garlic

Allium sativum

Clove

Hypotensive, Hypocholesterolaemic, antioxidant, antibacterial, antifungal, antiparasitic

High blood pressure, high cholesterol, colds, flu, bronchitis, asthma, sinusitis, hay fever, intestinal worms, gastro infections,

Avoid if allergic

Seek medical advice if taking anticoagulant and antiplatelet drugs

Ginger

Zingiber officinale

Rhizome

Anti inflammatory, circulatory stimulant, digestive, diaphoretic, antiplatelet, antiemetic

Nausea, morning / travel sickness, bloating, flatulence, circulatory stimulant, Raynaud’s syndrome, arthritis, endometriosis, period pain, colds, flu, bronchitis, asthma, sinusitis

Seek medical advice if pregnant, have peptic ulcers, gallstones, taking warfarin

Lavender

Lavandula officinalis / angustifolia

Carminative, antidepressant, spasmolytic

Anxiety, mild depression, insomnia, flatulence, irritable bowel syndrome, headaches

Avoid if allergic

Lemon balm

Melissa officinalis

Leaves

Carminative, spasmolytic, mild sedative, diaphoretic, antiviral

(topically)

Insomnia, anxiety, depression, irritable bowel, stomach ache, flatulence, cold sores (topically), colds, flu, fever

Marigold

Calendula officinalis

Flowers

Antiinflammatory, vulnerary, antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, antimicrobial

Wound healing

Nettle

Urtica dioica

Leaf

Antiallergy, antirheumatic, depurative

Hay fever, urticaria, dermatitis, arthritis, muscular aches and pains

Avoid if allergic

Oregano

Origanum vulgare

Leaves/ flowers

Antibacterial, antifungal, antioxidant

Colds, flu, bronchitis, asthma, sinusitis, gastrointestinal infections

Avoid if allergic

Peppermint

Mentha x piperita

Leaves

Antiemetic, Carminative, spasmolytic, antimicrobial, diaphoretic, analgesic, anticough

Flatulence, irritable bowel, colic, stomach ache, heartburn, morning / travel sickness, colds, flu, bronchitis, asthma, sinusitis, hay fever, headaches

Do not use if you have gatro-oesophageal reflux

Rose

Rosa spp.

Petals / hips

Hips: Antiinflammatory, astringent

Petals: Nervine

Hips:Vitamin C deficiency, diarrhoea, gastritis, osteoarthritis

Petals: Anxiety, mild depression, tension

Rosemary

Rosmarinus officinalis

Leaves / flowers

Circulatory stimulant, carminative, spasmolytic, antimicrobial, hepatoprotective

Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, ADHD, mental focus, concentration, memory, headaches, liver detoxification

Topically for wound healing, neuralgia, myalgia, sciatica, hair loss, dandruff

Take at a different time to any mineral supplements

Sage

Salvia officinalis

Leaves

Spasmolytic, astringent, antimicrobial

Menopausal symptoms (especially hot flushes), concentration and memory, flatulence, heartburn, stops lactation, laryngitis, pharyngitis, gingivitis, tonsilitis, glossitis, stomatitis

Pregnancy and lactation

Don’t have long term

Turmeric

Cucurma longa

Rhizome

Antiinflammatory, antiplatelet, antioxidant, hypolipidemic, choleretic

Peptic ulcer, heartburn, liver detoxification, arthritis, asthma, cystic fibrosis, cardiovascular diseases, hypercholesterolaemia,

Topically for skin conditions

Seek medical advice if taking antiplatelet or anticoagulant drugs

Thyme

Thymus vulgaris

Leaves/flowers

Expectorant, spasmolytic, antibacterial, antifungal, antimicrobial

Bronchitis, asthma, colds, flu, whooping cough, laryngitis, pharyngitis, gingivitis, tonsilitis, glossitis, stomatitis, gastritis, diarrhoea, bad breath

Avoid if allergic


Over to you

What infusion will you make?




Always seek medical advice before taking a new herb, if you are pregnant / lactating and to check for any interactions with other medications you are taking.


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