From The Colonial Apothecary to Your Kitchen – Four Recipes
Colonial-era apothecaries – or pharmacists – filled their shops with a variety of concoctions, many of which were made using herbs, roots, flowers, and other botanicals that can still be found in herb gardens and in the wild. Spearmint and jasmine were combined to create a Calming Tea that doubled as a fragrant additive to bath water. Horehound, honey, and thyme were blended into a Cough and Cold Remedy Tea. Native American medicinal knowledge was combined with European tradition in North America, resulting in remedies for sore throats and upset stomachs using ginger root, dandelion, cherry bark, and chickweed. All represented in our Native American Blend. For headaches, apothecaries sold a mixture of rose flower, sage, lavender, and marjoram – the Colonial Headache Remedy Tea. All four of these authentic historical teas can be found in our Colonial Apothecary Box, and while they’re delicious on their own, here are four recipes you can make with these exclusive blends.
Blackberry Mint Jasmine Refresher
When colonists wanted to relax, they turned to this multi-purpose herbal remedy – our Colonial Calming Tea and Sweet Bath. A refreshing, revitalizing blend of spearmint and jasmine. Colonists used this herbal mixture two ways, either as a soothing tea or as a fragrant addition to bath water. A sweet, tart, and delicious fixture in the culinary world, blackberries have also been used medicinally in Europe and by Native Americans for centuries. Blackberry leaf was used to aid in stomach complaints while the fruit was used to make cordials. Blackberries, mint, and jasmine come together in the recipe below in the perfect refreshing drink that can easily become a cocktail with the addition of vodka or your favorite spirit.
- 2 teaspoons Colonial Calming Tea & Sweet Bath
- 1 cup water
- 4-5 blackberries
- Sparkling water
- Vodka (optional)
- Mint leaves (optional, for garnish)
In a saucepan or teapot, simmer water. Add 2 teaspoons Colonial Calming Tea & Sweet Bath. Allow to steep for 3-5 minutes. Chill in refrigerator. Muddle 4-5 blackberries and add to the bottom of two glasses. Add ice to glasses, then the prepared chilled tea and vodka if desired. Top off with sparkling water and add mint leaves for garnish. Stir gently before drinking. Enjoy!
Horehound Hot Toddy
To fight colds in the 1700s, colonists turned to a mixture of horehound, honey, and thyme brewed together in a cough and cold remedy tea. The earliest record of a medicinal toddy, “a beverage made of alcoholic liquor with hot water, sugar, and spices” is from 1786, although Robert Bentley Todd is credited with popularizing prescribing the hot toddy in the 1800s. Our recipe below marries these two remedy drinks.
- 2 teaspoons Colonial Cough and Cold Remedy Tea
- ¾ cup water
- 1 ½ ounces whiskey
- 3 teaspoons honey, to taste
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice, to taste
- 1 cinnamon stick
In a saucepan or teapot, simmer water. Add 2 teaspoons Colonial Cough and Cold Remedy Tea. Allow to steep for 3 minutes. Pour tea into a mug, adding the whiskey, honey, and lemon juice. Add additional sweetener if desired. Stir with a cinnamon stick and enjoy!
Native American Blend Maple Latte
Looking for a new way to drink one of your old favorites? Try this easy latte recipe! One of our most popular teas, our
Native American Blend combines dandelion leaf, chickweed, ginger root, and cherry bark in an earthy brew. All valued medicinally and for flavor by the Native Americans. Native Americans used a variety of sugars – fruits, corn, and saps like maple before the introduction of cane sugar from Europe. Maple, of course, is still widely loved today.
Bring water to a simmer in a teapot or saucepan. Add 2 teaspoons Native American Blend and steep for 3-5 minutes. In a saucepan, combine tea, milk and maple syrup. Simmer, but do not boil. When warm, froth using a frother or a whisk. Add more maple syrup if desired. Serve and enjoy!
Herb Garden Jelly with Rose, Lavender, Sage, and Marjoram
- 2 cups water
- 4 heaping tablespoons Colonial Headache Remedy Tea
- 3 cups sugar
- 1 3 ounce package liquid pectin
In a saucepan, bring water to a simmer. Add Colonial Headache Remedy Tea. Remove from heat and allow to steep for 30 minutes. Strain and add sugar to brewed tea. Bring to a boil. Allow to boil for 2 minutes, stirring. Remove from heat and add pectin. Boil for an additional minute. Skim off any foam. Pour hot jelly into jars and process for 20 minutes or freeze any extra jelly. Enjoy on toast, with biscuits, or as a filling for cakes or donuts.