Fire Cider It Does a Body Good!
What is Fire Cider?
It’s a health tonic that was created back in the 70s by an herbalist named Rosemary Gladstar, and lots of people swear by its ability to keep their immune system in tip-top shape. So I decided to make some myself.
This fiery vinegar infusion is an especially pleasant and easy way to boost natural health processes, stimulate digestion, and raise your internal thermostat on cold days.
What is great about fire cider is that you don’t have to be super precise about the ingredients and the amounts of those ingredients that you use when making it. The ingredients can change from year to year depending on when you make it and what's growing around you or what ingredients you happen to have on hand. However, the standard base ingredients are apple cider vinegar, garlic, onion, ginger, horseradish, and hot peppers (some leave out the horseradish).
Fire cider can be taken straight by the spoonful or added to salads, marinades, or beverages. You can also save the strained pulp and dehydrate it or just mix it in with prepared dishes. Taking it once a day is all you need for the health benefits.
What are the benefits of Fire Cider?
I have read several accounts that the tonic is like rocket fuel for your immune system and digestive health. They recommend 2 to 3 tablespoons daily, either spread throughout the day or all at once.
Rosemary Gladstar breaks down what each ingredient brings to the table. First and foremost, apple-cider vinegar is great for digestive health. Horseradish is the number-one herb for combating sinus congestion and headaches. Ginger is a warming circulatory herb that's wonderful for digestion. It also helps fight infections and is good for nausea. Garlic is the “poor man's penicillin”. It has broad-spectrum antimicrobial and antibacterial properties and is an excellent aid for fighting infection. It also produces a heat that helps lower cholesterol. Onions have similar properties to garlic and are also good for cold and flus. Cayenne pepper is one of the best cardiovascular herbs and is great for the stomach and aids in ulcer healing. Last but not least, honey. Honey has antibacterial and anti fungal properties, as well. However, the honey is what allows you to consume the fire cider without calling the fire department!! It buffers the tonic and makes it easier on the palate. I’ll add my local honey, about 1/4 cup per jar, once I harvest my fire cider. You do not want to add the honey during the fermentation process.
What did I use for my Fire Cider ingredients per jar?
1/2 orange seeds, rinds, and all
1 whole lemon seeds, rinds, and all
6-8 cloves of garlic
1/2 jalapeño pepper
1Tablespoon fresh grated ginger
Bunch of fresh thyme (as much as I could fit in top of jar)
Raw Apple Cider Vinegar with Mother
I just layered all of the ingredients into the jar, filled with apple cider vinegar, capped it off with a piece of parchment paper so the metal lid won't erode, and screwed on each lid. I will leave these on the counter and shake each day until time to harvest in 4-6 weeks.
Some use rosemary or other herbs, but I happen to have Thyme handy and it has so many healing qualities such as lowering blood pressure, fighting acne, antibacterial properties, and is used as a mood booster that I thought it would be a great addition and add another layer of flavor to my tonic.
Once I harvest my fire cider in 4-6 weeks, straining out all of the ingredients to leave me with just my liquid tonic, I will add about 1/4 cup of raw local honey per jar. At that point you can leave on the counter or in your refrigerator for up to 6 months. Just shake before using.