DIY: Dragons Breath Herbal Apple Cider Vinegar

Fire cider is a long standing folk tradition that has been used during the fall, winter and spring months to support the circulatory and respiratory systems.  The 'recipe' is loose, use what you have available and substitutions can be made based on seasonality.  Herbal vinegars like this are such a great way to preserve the benefits of herbs and veggies and can be used a multitude of ways.  Sipping a spoonful each morning or evening, adding a splash to salad dressings or any recipe vinegar is called for, adding a shot to your favorite cocktail, or mixed with honey and taken as a delicious syrup.  The opportunities are endless!!  It is important to use a high quality raw apple cider vinegar when crafting this and not a pasteurized vinegar as the raw contains many important live cultures that benefit the gut.  This particular recipe is warming, moving and opens the nasal passageways in a really lovely way.  I love taking a spoonful in the mornings and feeling the warmth spread from my head to my belly.  Mmmm.  Delicious.

This recipe has been adapted from the Mountain Rose Herbs blog.  The base formulation is centered around horseradish, garlic, ginger and rosemary.  I added astragalus to help support the body's overall qi; astragalus is considered an adaptogen in Western herbalism and contains immunostimulants that support a healthy immune system.  Rosehips are one of the most valuable sources of Vitamin C, a vitamin that is so important during weather changes to keep our immune systems healthy.  Burdock root helps to gently clear heat that we can accumulate during colder months when we're not as active and also has an affinity for the digestive and respiratory tracts.   Have fun crafting your own herbal ciders and spicing up your pantry!!

Basic Ingredients

Place all ingredients to a large mason jar and fill the jar the rest of the way with apple cider vinegar.  Place a folded piece of parchment paper under the cap so the vinegar doesn't rust the metal.  Let the vinegar sit for 2-3 weeks.  Shake the jar daily and when you notice the onions and other veggies are starting to break down, that's when it's ready to strain.  If you use herb powders there will be sediment that occurs after the strained vinegar sits for a while.  It's up to you as to whether you leave the powder sediment or remove it.  Personally, I like to just shake it all up knowing that I'm getting some extra herbal goodness!!  If you feel called, you can add raw honey to the infused vinegar to taste before bottling.  This just adds the additional benefits of raw honey (which should not be given to children under 1 year old) and adds a touch of sweetness to balance the acidity and spiciness of the infusion.  Bottle your vinegar, label and have fun finding creative ways to use it!!

**You can use any glass bottle or jar to store your vinegar in.  If you're giving bottles of cider as gifts, Specialty Bottle has some lovely swing top bottles.



*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure, or prevent any diseases.  The information provided is for educational purposes only.  For health care advice, please consult your Primary Care Physician or other health care professional.