Homemade Herbal Throat Spray for Cough, Cold, and Flu
Author: Ann Timm
2tablespoonsdried elderberries or elder flowers
2tablespoonsdried grated marshmallow root
2inchesfresh gingergrated OR 1 teaspoon dried ginger
1large garlic clovegrated
3/4cuphigh-proof alcoholsuch as vodka or rum (must be at least 80-proof [40%] and preferably above 100-proof)
Place all herbs and spices in a quart-sized canning jar, then pour over the boiling water, pressing down on the herbs to make sure they're well soaked. Pour over the alcohol and cover tightly.
Let sit in a cool, dark place for at least two weeks, shaking gently every once in a while if you think of it, and for up to six months. The longer you let it sit the stronger and more potent the tincture will be.
When you're ready to bottle it, note the volume of your spray bottle, then strain out enough tincture to fill the bottle three-quarters full. (Strain well using cheesecloth or a fine mesh strainer.) Put this amount in a small cup and set aside. Place enough raw honey to fill the remaining one-fourth of the bottle in a small saucepan and heat very gently over low heat until thin but only warm to the touch, then add the tincture and whisk to combine well. Pour into the bottle, cap, and store in the refrigerator for up to six months. (Remember to label and date your concoction.)
To use, adults use 4-5 sprays every 2-3 hours as needed. Young children use 1 spray every 2-3 hours as needed and older children use 2 sprays every 2-3 hours.