If you’re like me and have been reading about anti-viral and antibacterial herbs, and looking for more ways to get them into to your kids, you may want to give this recipe a try – or make your own variation. I infused immune boosting herbs in finger gelatin made with fruit juice. I thought about calling them “homemade flu shots”, after the infamous “jello shot”, but don’t want to get busted by some government agency. Call them what you like, and enjoy some extra anti-oxidants and cold and flu fighting herbs.
Which Herbs Boost the Immune System?
There are many herbs that boost the immune system, although not all of them are “jello-friendly”. For instance, I know garlic jello is just not going to fly. Body and Soul~Mind and Spirit lists arandanon, astraglaus, calendula, cat’s claw, echinacea, garlic, ginger, hyssop, sage, St. john’s Wort and turmeric. Everyday Health lists cinnamon (and carrots and grapefruit). Natural News lists echinacea, ginseng, garlic, bell peppers, ginger, turmeric, gingko biloba, ganaderma, astragalus and cat’s claw. Mint family plants such as peppermint and lemon balm are also anti-viral.
For ease of use, I grabbed some cinnamon sticks and dried ginger root, some mint leaves and echinacea tea. I encourage you to experiment with different combinations. Do always check for any drug interactions if you are on medication. Most common culinary herbs are pretty safe, but there are a lot of meds out there so it’s best to double check, especially if you’re consuming in quantity (meds or herbs or both).
Knox Blox with Herbs - Immune Boosting Herbs in Finger Gelatin
4 envelopes unflavored gelatin (I used Knox)
1 cup cold fruit juice*
3 cups fruit juice, heated with herbs or 2 cups hot fruit juice plus one cup tea*
2 tablespoons honey, optional
*Possible fruit/herb combinations include:
Apple/Cinnamon/Ginger – 1 cup cold apple cider, 3 cups hot apple cider simmered with 2 cinnamon sticks and 1/2 teaspoon dried ginger root or 1 teaspoon fresh ginger
Apple-Carrot/Echinacea – 1 cup cold apple cider, 2 cups carrot juice, 1 cup echinacea tea
Apple-Carrot/Ginger – 1 cup cold apple cider, 2 cups carrot juice plus 1 cup apple cider, simmered with 1/2 teaspoon dried ginger root or 1 teaspoon fresh ginger
Apple/Mint – 1 cup cold apple cider, 2 cups hot apple cider, 1 cup peppermint tea
Pomegranate/Lemon Balm – 1 cup cold pomegranate juice, 2 cups hot pomegranate juice, 1 cup lemon balm tea
Orange/Ginger – 1 cup cold orange (or carrot) juice, 3 cups hot orange juice simmered with 1/2 teaspoon dried ginger root or 1 teaspoon fresh ginger
Prepare hot ingredients – If using juice with herbs, place juice and herbs in medium saucepot and simmer for 10 minutes. If using tea, brew tea and let steep for 10 minutes, covered, then mix with juice in saucepot and heat to boiling.
Sprinkle gelatin over cold juice in large bowl; let stand 1 minute. Add hot juice and stir until gelatin dissolves completely, about 5 minutes. Stir in honey if desired. Pour into 13x9x2 inch pan. (Half batches can be molded in a bread pan or 9×9 pan.)
Refrigerate until firm, about 3 hours. To serve, cut into 1 inch cubes. Makes about 9 dozen.
The boys, not too surprisingly, liked the apple/cinnamon/ginger best, but I’ll keep experimenting. I think this is a fun way to get in more herbs.
P.S. – You could use spiced elderberry wine for a grown up version.
I’m joining up with Kathy at Mind, Body and Sole and Sharon at Wood Wife’s Journal to host Wildcrafting Wednesday. Please share your stories on how you incorporate herbs into day-to-day life. We welcome anything and everything herbal – from crafts to cleaning to tinctures to cooking. Home remedies for common ailments are especially appreciated.
Self-sufficient living and back-to-basics tips to save food, money, and resources are great, too – if it involves traditional methods of homemaking and home healing then we want to read about it! Maybe you’ve got a sweet stillroom, a beautiful herb garden or a handy cold frame – tell us about it.
Just link up your post using the linky widget, add a link back here, and leave a comment below telling a bit about your post. Return links benefit everyone, so please don’t skip that step. Older posts are welcome, but skip the giveaways, since those links become outdated. (You can leave a link to a giveaway in the comments, if you like.)
Last week’s top posts were:
Natural Vapor Rub for Coughs & Colds by Nearly Natural Nicole
Immune Boosting Tea by Modern Alternative Mama
Why Sea Salt is Much Better Than Refined Salt by Small Footprint Family
Thanks for linking up and we hope you’ll join us again.
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