The Benefits of Fire Cider

In Recipes

There are many recipes and articles out there for this magical antioxidant beverage called Fire Cider. The term “Fire Cider” was coined by herbalist Rosemary Gladstar in the ‘80s and her traditional recipe includes apple cider vinegar, horseradish root, onion, garlic, ginger, and cayenne pepper.

As we explore health and mindfulness in all ways at GatherHaus, we were so intrigued not just about the recipe itself, but its health benefits and history. So what we are offering here is for you to join us on our journey, get a little caught up on its origins, and try out our own version of this recipe that we both enjoyed SO much!

HISTORY

We did some digging around to see what was out there in terms of research and acknowledgment of where Fire Cider originated.

Through our research, we were introduced to Claudia Morales-Barrera, a queer, Brown farmer and cook who fosters communal food knowledge and land relationship through a blog by Kristen Adaway on Thrillst. This blog gets our first mention as the author elevates Morales-Barrera’s work and platform and highlights her recipe. Here at GatherHaus we strive to break open access and highlight Black, Brown, LGBTQ+, and Women’s work so we are thrilled to find Claudia through this article. Please make sure to check out her work and follow her on Instagram.

Here you have a great article on not only Fire Cider and its basic recipe along with additional ingredients, but also other natural remedies. A video is also included, which I don’t know about you, but I always find helpful watching someone create something rather than simply interpreting words.

According to Farmer’s Almanac, Fire Cider “is a traditional tonic that calls for grated fresh horseradish, ginger, garlic, onions, and hot pepper in apple cider vinegar for 3 to 4 weeks, then finishing with honey to balance the acidity. I like to add additional flavor-rich herbs and fruits.

Renowned as a folk remedy for generations, fire cider is used to help ward off winter colds, flus, and other infirmities. Many folks mix it into salad dressings or festive grog.”

OUR JOURNEY

Living in Minnesota, we know a little something about wild winters. We also experience something known as first fall, false fall, and second fall, followed by cold, snow, deep temps that fluctuate, finally moving into first spring, false spring, and second spring. We have grown very comfortable with unreliable temps that most often guarantee seasonal colds.

At GatherHaus, as we dig deeper into our relationship with the earth and the plants she brings forth, we are always exploring more natural ways to boost our immune system and fight colds and congestion. We also both have children who are immunocompromised, so leveraging ingredients from our gardens and turning them into a dynamic health drink? Yes please!

Before we get to our recipe, here are just a few health benefits to whet your appetite. The more you dig around online, the more you will discover that taking a ½ – 1Tbs shot of fire cider every day will quickly become an effective part of your home routine.

True to our foundational recipe methods, here is a breakdown of some of the elemental herbs used in fire cider which have their own special medicinal properties.

FOUNDATIONAL INGREDIENTS

Apple Cider Vinegar: Boosts immunity and supports healthy gut bacteria.
Horseradish Root: Boots immunity, supports the respiratory system and helps clear sinus infections.
Garlic: Keeps the vampires away, it’s antiviral, and an antibacterial that contains allicin which helps ward off cancer
Ginger: Improves circulation, reduces inflammation and contains antiviral and antimicrobial properties to help boost immunity and ward off sickness
Onion: High in vitamin C, anti-inflammatory properties and antiviral properties
Hot Peppers: Contain capsaicin, which helps improve circulation & clear respiratory issues, any pepper works so have fun picking your favorite or whatever you have on hand

OPTIONAL ADDITIONAL INGREDIENTS

Turmeric Root: Reduces inflammation and helps the body detox
Thyme: Antibacterial and expectorant properties hep to relieve sore throats, boost immunity and clear mucus from the body
Rosemary: Antibacterial and natural decongestant
Oregano: Antibacterial, antimicrobial and antiviral properties make oregano wonderful for soothing coughs and colds
Citrus Fruits: Sliced lemons and oranges bring a lovely color and zest to fire cider and contain high levels of vitamin C to help support your immune system
Honey: Raw, local honey helps boost immunity and supports the body’s allergy defenses.

RECIPE

Fire Cider Recipe (compiled from a variety of resources we collected and tested by us)

INGREDIENTS

3 cups Organic Unfiltered Apple Cider Vinegar (or enough to cover ingredients)
4-8 oz fresh Horseradish, grated or roughly chopped
4-8 oz fresh Ginger, grated or roughly chopped
2 oz fresh Turmeric, grated or roughly chopped
1 medium onion chopped
10 Garlic cloves crushed or chopped
1 Lemon zested and sliced
1 Orange sliced
2-3 Jalapeno Peppers sliced
3 Cinnamon sticks
3 Sprigs of fresh Rosemary
6 Sprigs of fresh Thyme
1 tsp Peppercorn
¼ tsp cayenne powder

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Peel and grate the horseradish. Add it to a 2 quart sized jar along with the sliced ginger, turmeric, jalapenos, onion, orange, lemon, and garlic. Top it off with fresh herbs, cinnamon sticks, and peppercorns.
  2. Pour the apple cider vinegar into the jar, making sure all the ingredients are fully coerced. Add as much cider as you can to cover the ingredients. Ensuring all ingredients are covered will prevent them from spoiling.
  3. Seal the jar. Use a piece of parchment paper under the lid to keep the vinegar from touching the metal, or a plastic lid if you have one.
  4. Shake up the jar to combine the ingredients and store the jar in a dark cool place for 4 weeks.
  5. Remember to shake the jar once daily to mix the ingredients.
  6. After three to four weeks, use a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth to strain out the pulp and solid ingredients. Squeeze as much liquid out of the ingredients as you can.
  7. Stir in the honey until it is incorporated. Taste and add more honey to reach your desired sweetness. Your fire cider should taste hot, spicy, and sweet.
  8. Store sealed in an airtight jar. Keep in the refrigerator or in a dry, cool place for up to 6 months. Enjoy 1-2 tablespoons daily or use the fire tonic when cooking.

 

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