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Fire Cider Tonic Recipe in Lockdown

Updated: May 27, 2020

Foraging is something I have learnt bits and pieces of over the last year of living in the Lake District and I am absolutely loving it. The idea that we can live off our surroundings and most of us don't even know how much of what grows around us is edible is amazing.

There is delicious food growing everywhere which is rich in so much goodness. Not only that, but lots of it is amazing to use as medicine in the home.

Did you know daisies are incredible for bruises?

Much nicer than using horrible chemicals on our skin.

I have also been working with an amazing herbalist called Lesley from Sophiology Wise. We have a couple of very exciting projects which are on going so I am lucky enough to be filled with her amazing wisdom regularly. You can check out her stuff here.

This week I decided that I was going to make my first Fire Cider Tonic using some ingredients I would forage on one of my lockdown walks.

Fire Cider Tonic has been used for generations to ward off nasty flus and colds and other bugs and nasties. Perfect for our immune systems right now in the Corona Virus Pandemic.


  • 1 small onion, coarsely chopped

  • 6 large garlic cloves, smashed

  • Handful of Wild Garlic

  • Handful of nettles (use gloves)

  • Handful of Garlic Mustard

  • large chunk of peeled and coarsely grated or chopped ginger

  • Slice of fresh turmeric (you can also used ground)

  • 4 rosemary sprigs

  • 1 whole clove

  • Cayenne Pepper

  • 1 lemon, quartered

  • Organic apple cider vinegar. Enough to cover all ingredients (with the mother)

  • Honey to Taste (I'll put mine in after the 3 weeks)


  • A (preferably glass) quart container; cheesecloth

  • Fire cider can be made 3 months ahead; store chilled in a (preferably glass) resealable container


  • Some herbalists recommend taking a tablespoonful of cider tonic every day throughout the winter months, swallowing it right off the spoon, or adding it to a cup of juice or hot tea, perhaps with a bit of honey. If you take it neat, remember that the acidic vinegar can erode tooth enamel, so swallow it quickly and rinse your mouth afterwards.

  • Others use it as a gargle at the first sign of a scratchy throat.

  • Mixed half and half with honey, it makes a good cough remedy. (Don’t feed honey to children less than a year old.)

  • Use it as you would plain vinegar in dressings for salads or cooked vegetables, in marinades and vinegar-based sauces.


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