Hope everyone's week has gone well!
The Ginger Beer was a big hit in Botanicals class! I made enough
to share with my Botanicals classmates, some other colleagues and a
few professors as well! I named it Sunny Summer Thursday Ginger
Beer since our class meets on Thursday evenings and we enjoy the
sunlight as we gather plants from the NUHS Botanical Garden for use
in our remedies.
So, rather than ramble this week, I'll share my "info
sheet/storyline" along with the medicinal properties of the
botanical ingredients for the ginger beer! For the purposes of some
background information, I was a home brewer for about 15 years. As
I would introduce each new batch, I would build a "story" behind
the brew and share that story at the introduction of the new batch.
This is how Tall Tailes (with an e) Brewery came to be. I suppose
you know by now that I like to tell a good story, so here goes!
(And remember, the ingredients and amounts are real… the sources
are well, a bit of a Tall Taile, so you can use ingredients from
RETURNS FROM A 4-YEAR HIATUS!
SUNNY SUMMER THURSDAY GINGER BEER!
Sit back, relax and take a long, cool sip of this refreshing
comeback beverage from the brewhouse of Tall Tailes
This non-alcoholic ginger beer is slathered with crushed ginger
root, accentuated with juniper berry, fresh key lime juice and
fresh lemon juice! Only the finest turbinado sugar is utilized to
sweeten the sharpness of our exclusively grown ginger on our secret
palatial mountain estate! Finally, just in case "the bite" is a
little more than you expected (light weight), we put a bit of
yarrow in our recipe to soothe the beast that is your tummy saying,
"Give me MORE! I can't take it, but I WANT MORE of that Tall Tailes
This could be a "non-alcoholic" preparatif sipped before a
sunset dinner cruise in the Tropics! The short overview of the
active ingredients after the recipe will give a little more info on
the remarkably soothing GI help from this refreshing beverage!
Have a much as you like. The days are long, the sun is hot, so
why not keep "cool" the Tall Tailes way… with an ice-cold Sunny
Summer Thursday Ginger Beer!
A tasty pile of ingredients about to become some Ginger
Here's the recipe for a 2.5 gallon batch:
Making Ginger Beer is as simple as making soup!
Just take care not to bring to a boil with all the sugar in
Now, once chilled, your Ginger Beer is ready to be served to
your family and friends! Enjoy!
The Ginger Beer just after it was bottled, covered and stored
for 24 hours.
It is a bit cloudy as it has a lot of botanical material in it
(the good stuff!).
That will settle on the bottom, but it is really good to drink
the healthy properties of the ingredients.
Here's some useful information on the medicinal components of
Sunny Summer Thursday Ginger Beer...
Ginger (Zingiber Officinale Roscoe)1
Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)2
Juniper Berry (Juniperus communis)3
Lemon and Lime Juice
All the folks here at Tall Tailes Brewery hope you have enjoyed
reading this little bit of information on our first non-alcoholic
offering. Making the Ginger Beer was loads of fun and making a
healthy soft drink (is this possible?) is a bonus in itself! The
brewing bug may have bitten the staff here and some mothballs have
been moved along with some dusting off of old brewing equipment.
Let the exams begin! We finished up this week with the
first of the many exams, quizzes, midterms and lab practicals that
6th Trimester is known for providing (if that is
the proper term). The first quiz was centered on the endocrine
system, its involved structures and their interaction. What a doozy
to kick off the trimester!
The classes aren't all work and no fun however! In our 'Special
Topics in Botanical Medicine' class this week, we had the
opportunity to make tinctures for the first time! A little about
tinctures first. Tinctures can be made from the fresh or dried
medicinal parts of plants. These parts could be the leaf, flower,
stem or root of a plant, or all of the above, depending on the
plant. Next, these medicinal parts are 'soaked' in a solution of
alcohol, glycerine or vinegar, depending on the type of plant and
the 'plant constituent' or chemical part of the plant that we want
to use in the tincture.
The tinctures are made in ratios such as 1:2 or 1:4 or higher.
The first number is the amount of plant material, typically in
grams. The second number is the amount of 'vehicle' or alcohol,
glycerine or vinegar in milliliters. So, if you have 10 grams
of plant material being soaked in 20 milliliters of alcohol, you
would have a 1:2 ratio tincture! The units of measure don't really
matter as long as you stay consistent with your ratios if you make
a tincture and like the outcome. Simple really!
Some of the tinctures our class made this past week.
I made a Lavender (Lavandula augustifolia) tincture in a 1:18
ratio as a fragrance for a future cleaning solution. I also made a
Bilberry Leaf (Vaccinium myrtillus) tincture in a 1:4 ratio as an
experiment for future tinctures. Bilberry Leaf is reported to have
anti-aging properties through improved circulation in the small
blood vessels near the hands, feet and farthest reaches of the
circulatory system from the heart. With an aging patient
population, research continuing and the possibility of a potent
herbal medication, Bilberry shows some promise!
Herbal medicine is just one of the strong tools at the
naturopathic physician's disposal. The chemical constituents in
many pharmaceutical medications are either the exact phytochemical
or a derived component of many botanicals (or plant medicines). The
great thing we are learning about the botanical medicines is that
while the patient gets the benefit of the botanical medication
(albeit at a much lower concentration than a corresponding
pharmaceutical medication), the botanical medication typically has
other components that reduce or eliminate any side effects of
taking the botanical medication. While not true all the time, this
is typically the case with botanical medications. As with any
medication, any physician needs to take the precaution of
understanding how the botanical medicine interacts with any other
medications the patient may be taking, whether botanical or
This week, I am grateful for botanical medications that Nature
has provided for us. I personally have utilized a botanical
remedy a number of times in various circumstances from a poultice
for a pretty big scrape to helping ward off a nasty ear
infection. Thanks to those who have come before us and paved
the way learning, gaining knowledge and sharing over countless
generations for all that Nature provides for our health.
• Combined Classes
• Observing in Clinic
• Botanical Medicine
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