When you were younger, a spoonful of sugar helped the medicine go down.
Today find a natural prescription for good health by getting to the root of the problem — a lack of dietary calcium intake and chilly temps.
We tapped two of SF’s top herbalists for their best recipes: an edible tincture for healthy bones, courtesy of Jeanne Rose of the Aromatic Plant Project, and a wintertime facial toning elixir that soothes irritated skin, tightens pores, and keeps acne at bay from Jenny Pao of Nectar Essences.
Vinegar Tincture of Dandelion Root
Serving size varies
Any-size dandelion root (available at farmers markets)
Room-temperature apple cider vinegar
1. Rough chop root; fill several quart-size jars with root pieces and leaves. In each jar, pour vinegar to just cover roots.
2. Cover jars; set in cool, dark place (such as your cupboard) for at least six weeks. (Fresh roots will develop and exude a white milky substance into vinegar.)
3. Strain roots and leaves; rebottle vinegar in new container.
4. Use mixture in salad dressings, marinades, or sprinkled over cooked greens. Each tbsp. contains more than 175 mg calcium.
Aromatherapy Facial Toner
Makes twelve-and-a-half ounces (good for all skin types)
1½ c. water
1 peppermint tea bag
1 rooibos tea bag
1 chamomile tea bag
1 drop rosemary essential oil
4 drops lavender essential oil
1. Bring water to a boil. Turn off stove and let water cool 3 minutes.
2. Place tea bags into pot. Cover and let stand 5 minutes.
3. Cool completely before removing tea bags. Add oils.
4. Pour into glass bottle and store in fridge for two weeks.
5. Shake bottle before use. Apply toner to clean skin prior to moisturizing and admire the results.
Ingredients for recipes available at Real Food Company, 2140 Polk Street, between Broadway and Vallejo Street (415-673-7420 or realfoodco.com). For more information about Aromatic Plant Project or Nectar Essences, go to aromaticplantproject.com or nectaressences.com.
Photo: Jacob Snavely / Getty Images