Making Super-tonic in the Great Outdoors

That’s right, super-tonic. I’ll get around to explaining it in a second.

I knew the minute my hand left the back porch door knob this morning that *this* day was going to be a hum-dinger! I couldn’t make myself go inside after letting the chickens out…thankfully only my oldest daughter was awake, so I reveled in the clear morning unfolding around me, restocking the chicken feed and cleaning/refilling their waterer, clucking right back at my beautiful hens who are sometimes giving us 19 eggs a day by noon! Ahh…the gift of living this country life.

All weekend long I’ve been wishing for time to put together this super-tonic recipe our herb-savvy neighbors gave us…but between caring for a sick child and getting some garden and yard work done, I just didn’t have time, nor all the ingredients on hand to get it done. So this afternoon, I and my older girls set up an outdoor “kitchen” complete with camp chairs, cutting boards, knives, veggie peelers, a food chopper and a makeshift “sink”. Okay, so it was just a hose with a sprayer nozzle and a bucket, but it worked! Why outside? Well, firstly, because of the gorgeous weather! Secondly, because of the fumey ingredients in this here tonic!

Here’s how it works. Oh, it’s for good health, by the way. You knew that, didn’t you? *Wink*

You take five equal parts of the following diced fine, say one cup each which is what I did:

  • horseradish
  • garlic
  • onion
  • ginger
  • jalapeno peppers or cayenne peppers or other hot pepper

My oldest scrubbed and peeled the horseradish, which I then sliced into chunks and diced fine in my food chopper. Worked slick! While she was scrubbing horseradish (and tossing the stems to her eight puppies to chew) my 8 year old nimbly broke apart garlic buds, peeled the cloves and took her turn at the food chopper. I sat and removed seeds from peppers with my rubber gloves on of course! Onions came next, and last, the ginger. Mmm, ginger smells good! I just peeled it with my knife, hoping that was the “way to do” and then into the chopper it went. By this time we had a bowl almost brimful of knock you off your camp chair strong smelling stuff! I was so glad we’d done it outside with nary a tear or sniffle from fumes. The breezes outside were extra delicious today, I soon realized exactly *how* welcome they were when I went inside to fill my gallon jar with the ingredients. Whew-ee did my cheeks burn from jalapeno osmosis or what? Anyway, onto the next important step of this recipe.

  • 2.5-3 quarts Apple Cider Vinegar, the kind from the health food store that has the “mother” in it

Once you’ve filled your gallon jar with the five chopped ingredients (or 4 quart sized jars with equal portions) take your ACV and finish filling the jar(s) to the top. Put your lids on and store in a dark place, such as a cupboard or closet. Mine are in my canner. Take the super-tonic out twice a day and shake it good. After two weeks of this, strain the liquid out and keep it in a glass jar. If you have any glass medicine bottles, the kind with the droppers, that would be an excellent keeper for easy handling. One dropperful in apple juice for a child, two for an adult. This can be used daily for a good immunity builder, or when needed for nipping colds and flu in the bud.

Our neighbors shared a bottle with us last week, and I can promise you that diluted in juice, you hardly notice the taste. But by evening, my daughter and I both had clear heads and no sniffles! Good-bye head colds. I know a good thing when I smell see it.

Do you have any home-brewed health goodies to share? Btw, this super-tonic recipe is all over the net, but my neighbor’s good instructions aren’t. Let me know if you make this!

Hat tip to my friends, Farmer John and his wife!