Healthy Household: Self Heal Essence

“Seal-heal has gained recent respect for its antiviral qualities. Effective for feverish colds and flu, it has also been proposed for treating herpes and AIDS, and is an underrated liver, gallbladder, and thyroid remedy.”
Backyard Medicine: Harvest and Make Your Own Herbal Remedies by Julie Bruton-Seal

self heal essence 1 Healthy Household: Self Heal Essence

Self Heal Essence is very easy to make. Self Heal reminds us that “all healing is self-healing”.

This weekend in the backcountry, I was lucky enough to find a meadow full of Self Heal (Prunella vulgaris). I decided to make an essence of Self Heal. If you have ever used Rescue Remedy or the Bach Flower Remedies you have used plant essences. I first learned about Rescue Remedy from my sister Christine who used it on her anxious dog. I have since used it for years on anxious or upset children… and adults.

Self Heal Essence
I’ve never made an essence before and the process is a bit woo woo. According to instructions you need a bright sunny day and a positive, peaceful state of mind to make a good essence.

1/2c wildcrafted Self Heal (Prunella vulgaris), flower heads
1c spring water
1/2c organic vodka
The Self Heal flowers are put into some spring water and let sit in the warmth of the sun to infuse for 3-4 hours. The plant material is strained out and one part organic vodka is added to two parts infused water. I reused a Rescue Remedy bottle which was perfect for my homemade Self Heal Essence!

While you are waiting for your essence to infuse, collect the tops of the Self Heal flowers. Dry the flower heads completely before storage. The flower tops can be used to make hot or cold infusions.

self heal essence 2 Healthy Household: Self Heal Essence

Self Heal is a very common plant with a very long history of use. The plant likes wet areas in the woods or meadows.

self heal essence 3 Healthy Household: Self Heal Essence

Put the Self Heal flowers into spring water and let sit in the warmth of the sun to infuse for 3-4 hours.

self heal essence 4 Healthy Household: Self Heal Essence

While you are waiting for your essence to infuse, collect the tops of the Self Heal flowers. Dry the flower heads completely before storage. Julie Bruton-Seal uses one or two flower head in iced infusion to help with hot flashes.

“Self-heal essence reminds us that all healing is self-healing, and is useful if you are ill and don’t know where to turn for help.”

For more recipes please see Healthy Household: Staying Clean Safely.

GO BOX Storage FREE U-PICK

gobox free upick 2016 3 GO BOX Storage FREE U PICK

The GO BOX Permaculture Project has had a bumper crop of raspberries!

It’s time for the GO BOX Storage FREE U-PICK!

PLEASE check into the office first and we will show you where to pick. We have TONS of cherries, some currants, and TONS of raspberries. We are located at 2853 Bowers Pl, Kamloops.

The FREE U-PICK is open from 9am to noon on Monday to Friday, July 11-15th, 2016. PLEASE come ONLY during these times. Thanks.

To find GO BOX Storage see this Google Map.

gobox free upick 2016 1 GO BOX Storage FREE U PICK

We also have lots of cherries to share!

gobox free upick 2016 2 GO BOX Storage FREE U PICK

And there’s still some currents and gooseberries available!

Ghee Coconut Creamer for Camping

ghee coffee creamer Ghee Coconut Creamer for Camping

Ghee Coffee Creamer is a good cream substitute for camping season. If you like butter, ghee is stable without refrigeration making it a great camping or emergency food.

It’s camping season. While traveling it can be difficult to find sources of nourishing traditional foods. Usually, I like organic cream in my morning coffee but organic cream can be difficult (or impossible) to find outside of cities. In the past when I couldn’t get quality cream or raw milk I made a coconut-based substitute. This is an updated version of Coconut Coffee Creamer using ghee rather than butter.

Ghee travels and stores much better than butter. If you are going into the backcountry and want buttery trout or wildcrafted greens, ghee is the answer. You can buy commercial organic ghee but making your own will save you about half the cost.

Ghee will also store well as emergency food in your car or camper. If you would like more information about emergency rations please see Emergency Preparation: Fasting or Ketogenic Rations. There’s a link to the whole series about household emergency preparation too.

Homemade Ghee

1 pound unsalted, organic butter
Ghee is very easy to make. Take one pound of unsalted, organic butter and slowly heat in a sauce pan. Simmer the butter for 15-20 minutes skimming off the lactose that bubble to the top. Strain the golden ghee through some cheese cloth to get out the remaining lactose. Some people cook the ghee to a nut brown color for Indian cooking but I prefer using golden ghee.

Ghee Coconut Creamer

1/3c organic coconut oil
1/3c organic creamed coconut
1/3c ghee made from unsalted, organic butter
In a food processor, blend the coconut oil and creamed coconut together with the warm ghee. The Ghee Coconut Creamer should last 1-2 months without refrigeration. 2-3 tablespoons for each liter of coffee is about right.

For more information about the benefits of using coconut products in your daily coffee please see: Coconut Coffee Creamer.

For more tips about nourishing traditional food preparation while traveling please see: Eating Nourishing Traditional Foods While Traveling.

Healthy Household: Quick Summer Salve

summer salve 2016 Healthy Household: Quick Summer Salve

Quick Summer Salve gives protection for dry or mature skin. It may even help keep the bugs away.

This Quick Summer Salve is nourishing for the skin and helps keep the bugs away. A low-carbohydrate diet is still the best defence against bug bites.

1 part organic shea butter
1 part organic mango butter
organic essential oils: frankincense, lavender, catnip, peppermint and geranium
Melt the shea and mango butter in a Pyrex measuring cup in a pot of boiling water. Remove from heat and pour butters into containers. Add the essential oils. Mix gently and allow to cool. Label the containers.

For more recipes please see Healthy Household: Staying Clean Safely.

Cauliflower Summer Salad with Crispy Walnuts

lunch kit week 3 Cauliflower Summer Salad with Crispy Walnuts

HAPPY LONGEST DAY! Cauliflower Summer Salad travels well and is a good addition to picnics or camping trips.

This salad reminds me of an old favorite couscous (or bulgur wheat) salad. This salad does not use any grains and is safe for someone on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, GAPS or a modified Paleo Diet.

Crispy Walnuts

1-2c organic walnuts, coarsely chopped
1T organic coconut oil
1tsp sea salt
In a cast-iron frying pan, melt some coconut oil over a medium heat. Add the walnuts and sea salt and stir while they toast. Don’t overcook. Remove from heat and store in the fridge for snacks or as a topping for salads.

Cauliflower Summer Salad

2-3c Cauliflower Side Dish, chilled
1/2 organic long cucumber, sliced
1/2c garden parley or lovage, chopped
4-6 garden radishes, sliced (optional)
2-3T garden chives, chopped finely (optional)
1/2c organic crispy walnuts, chopped
sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
This salad is good with any fresh vegetables from the garden. Don’t be limited by the normal. Use your imagination and enjoy! In a large bowl, mix the Cauliflower Side. Dish with the vegetables and walnuts. Add sea salt and pepper, if needed.