Spring Sprang…

It finally happened…

March is a-marching, madness abounds, the sun is nearly done melting the snow, bird song flitters through opened windows and the darkness is lifting… Buds have appeared, they may be small and indistinct at the moment, but there they are… The sun shines, giving a warm glow to the everything and lightening my mood…

But this morning the skies were cloaked with clouds, lurking, threatening to darken my mood… I’m truly in ‘Spring Mode’, my heart feels as if winter has been too long, too dark and too cold, and they are failing miserably to bring me down… It’s nice to see the last remnants of The Hags bleached plaid wash away, even if it reveals the sickly yellow-green carpet that spreads out under foot… The rain, and sun will transform that soon enough…

And time remembered is grief forgotten
And frosts are slain and flowers begotten,
And in green underwood and cover,
Blossom by blossom the spring begins.
-Algernon Swinburne

But as the Equinox approaches and we find ourselves at the ‘edges’ of Winter, the major climatic shift can hard on our bodies… So it is a good time to give a boost to your immune system with natural remedies and cleansing foods… Which is why I’ll be hosting the Tea Party for the week later in the month… But for now, I always find this time of year leaves me with a craving for Dandelion and Burdock cordial…

Ingredients for Dandelion & Burdock Cordial...

In rural Britain it’s traditional to drink Dandelion and Burdock cordial at this time, as these herbs help to cleanse the blood and are a good tonic for the body after it’s Winter hardships… As the Vernal Equinox heralds the arrival of spring, it is a time of renewal in both nature and the home, so before I get down to some serious packing (we’re moving in May) and spring-cleaning, I think I’m going to try my hand at making my own homemade Dandelion and Burdock cordial!

There have been a small number of stories concerning its origin, most now widely considered to be apocryphal… The story tells of an Italian monk who, whilst deep in prayer, was sent a message from God to go out an make a elixir from the first ingredients he comes across… St Thomas of Aquinas the monk in question, lived around the 13th century, if the story has any truth to it, it would make Dandelion & Burdock one of the oldest soft drinks… err.. ever.

* Dandelion – Is rich in Vit A and C, iron, and it’s benefits include stimulation of bile flow, weight loss, improvement in liver metabolism and it’s also a safe diuretic.
* Burdock – This healer and blood purifier, regulates sugar metabolism, destroys “unfriendly” bacteria, detoxifies and cleanses the kidneys and gall bladder.
* Anise -This antimicrobial herb has been used since the seventh century, as a remedy for curing coughs, and aiding in digestive problems.
* Ginger – This warming herb as a truck load of health benefits from aiding in digestive ailments, relieving nausea; which can be effective in treating morning sickness as well as motion sickness. It can help knock out a fever, and stimulate circulation of the blood. It can also help relax muscles around the blood vessels and is said to help prevent blood clots from forming. The warming effects make it a natural decongestant as well as an antihistamine, making it the perfect remedy for colds.

This gorgeous drink full of ginger and spice, hedgerows, sunshine & fun, is not something that you have to enjoy in the Spring, it’s also a favourite Summer drink, mixed with lots of ice – And is rather tasty with a shot of Gin, garnished with a few fresh Borage flowers, for the ultimate English beverage, stepped in folklore…

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