N

H

Blog

Welcome to my writer's log. I'm using this blog as my writer's notebook to keep a record of my writing and research activities. You're quite welcome to swing by and have a look.

Meg Wetherby's recipe for elder linctus - good for coughs and colds

By Helen Steadman, Sep 17 2017 05:05PM

Hello everyone,


If it ever stops raining, why not pop down to the nearest hedgerow and pick some berries to make a lovely elder linctus? It's very easy to make and tastes delicious on its own or mixed with sparkling water, or even with cider or gin.


Many moons ago, elder was referred to as the medicine chest of country folk and was often used as a general strengthener. Traditionally, it was used for coughs and colds. On the basis of most sympathetic magic where 'like cures like' elder was used for lung conditions as the bare sprigs resemble the inside of lungs.


                              Elder wand, sprig and leaves
Elder wand, sprig and leaves

When I carried out research for my historical novel, Widdershins, which is about herbalists who end up being tried as witches, I went to Dilston Physic Garden to learn how to identify trees and plants and make herbal remedies from them.


Below is the recipe for elder linctus that I usually use, and it's the same one that I adapted for use by Annie and Jane Chandler and Meg Wetherby in Widdershins.


                                                     Elder linctus recipe
Elder linctus recipe


The most important aspect of foraging for any wild food is making sure you know what you're picking. I attach some pictures below that should help with identification, but if you're in any doubt whatsoever, please seek advice from a professional herbalist, or from a tree expert.


                                        Elder linctus, berries and leaves
Elder linctus, berries and leaves

As with all herbs, avoid giving elder to babies and children without seeking medical advice first. And if you're pregnant, taking any medication, or have any medical condition, please seek medical advice before taking elder linctus.


Happy foraging!


Helen




Add a comment
* Required
RSS Feed

Web feed