Foraging - cider as medicine!

31st October, 2018
by Julian | 2 Min Read
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Make a warming, pre-winter tonic

Welcome to the latest news-post with our resident forager Brigit-Anna McNeill.

Here she shares her recipe for the nights that are drawing in.

Fire Cider is a wonderful and warming medicine that stems from an ancient folk remedy.

It is easy to make and will really help strengthen and boost the immune system, help fight off colds
and flu and stimulate the digestive system.

Because this remedy is handed down through many lines it does vary depending on when you make it, what the season is, what foraging you know or what grows in your garden or nearby.


Key ingredients

  • unpasteurised apple cider vinegar
  • ginger root
  • garlic
  • turmeric root
  • horseradish root
  • chilli peppers

Wonderful herbs, veg and wild ingredients I love to add (starting with my favourites) include:

horseradish leaf, nettles, nettle seeds, dandelion root and leaf, rosemary, thyme, burdock root, sage, chickweed, lemon/grapefruit/orange peels, rose-hips, onion, peppercorns, fennel leaf, stalk and seeds, dill, parsley, hairy bittercress, nasturtium leaf and flower, calendula flowers, yarrow, cinnamon sticks, star anise, raspberries, hawthorn berries, organic raw honey (or vegan alternative such as maple syrup and barley malt.

Just experiment and enjoy!


Find a good sized jar and fill it with herbs, fruit, veg and spices leaving 2-3 inches of space from the top.

Pour the cider vinegar over everything, filling the jar to the top.

Place some baking parchment under the lid or use a cloth lid with a rubber band, or a plastic lid as vinegar will corrode any metal lids.

Leave to infuse in a cool, dark place for 4 - 6 weeks giving it a gentle poke or shake every now and again.

After this time you can take out the plant material using a cheesecloth to strain out the pulp. Make sure to squeeze the cloth when straining to get all that goodness out and into the vinegar.

How to use your wonderful Fire Cider

  • as a daily pick me up or medicine by having a tablespoon or a shot daily in a little water
  • use it as an addition to salad dressings
  • in marinades
  • a wonder ingredient in Virgin Marys and Bloody Marys!
  • sprinkled onto your chips
  • sprinkled onto your greens as a way to absorb the minerals in your greens better and to add a gorgeous flavour