My favorite Dried herbs and How to clean Rose hips

I totally rely on herbs. I am beginning to realize that comfort in my life has to do with the fact that I have herbs, readily available whenever I happen to need any. I try and stock up on a few of my favorites, just so I never do without.

I am a little addicted to a few roots. And I honestly think that I cannot sleep without the aid of some kind of herbal tea. I have come to know and love a few dried herbs that are staples in our house for my homemade teas.

For today’s post I am going to write about my favorite Dried Herbs. I am sure that my list may not include all your favorites, or it could even include some things you are not aware of, but these are my personal favorites, and to each its own preference when it comes to personal herbal preparation and consumption. As each herb as its own function and reason for use, I recommend only trying them after thorough research into if your symptoms even qualify to use them, and also do thorough talk with a doctor, if you have one.

If you are taking any medications, I highly recommend consulting with your primary care before trying any strong herbs, mild herbs here can be less of a worry. I am not a nutritionist, nor certified in herbology, but I am aware of what works for me, and am just sharing my experience for educational purposes.

I am not a Doctor, nor wish to answer any herb questions or whether or not it would interact with what you are taking. I personally don’t take any big Pharma medication unless its absolutely needed, like say child birth, otherwise, I try to rely on herbs.

My favorite dried herbs;

  • Chamomile Flower: easy going herb Chamomile is a relaxing herb. I use chamomile as a base flavor when making other blends of herbs, as it has a very easy palatable taste. I use the flower in bath soaks for a more relaxing bath. Chamomile is very easy to grow at home and harvest yourself, but drying and collecting enough can be hard unless you have a lot harvested. Chamomile is also a mild anti-inflammatory and can be used in a poultice to bring down bruises and can be used in a salve to help ease inflammation. http://www.herbwisdom.com/herb-chamomile.html
herbal salves with calendula
herbal salves with calendula
herbal salves with chamomile, turmeric and more
herbal salves with chamomile, turmeric and more
  • Valerian Root: Strong affecting Valerian is the sleep root. I use Valerian tincture in the daytime for anxiety and a heavy strong dose of it at bedtime to sleep. I recommend starting slow to see how it affects you, before you use any amounts of Valerian.http://www.herbwisdom.com/herb-valerian.html
  • Rose hip ground buds: easy going herb I love rose hips. I will include a special section of how to harvest rose hips and clean them with pictures after this list. I love harvesting them. De-seeding them and drying for further use. I use rose hips for a flavoring for baking, its very fruity and high in vitamin C. I use rose hips to flavor my tea. When mixed with hibiscus flower, you can achieve a very tart, fruit, red taste in teas and in baked goods.http://www.herbwisdom.com/herb-rose-hip.html
  • Hibiscus ground flower: common and easy going herb Hibiscus makes a very dark red. Most herbal teas that you buy in the stores always have hibiscus in them so the tea brews a dark color. You can use hibiscus by itself and make a lovely tasting iced tea or hot tea and or include it with other flavors such as rose hips.http://www.gaiaherbs.com/articles/detail/42/The-Surprising-Health-Benefits-of-Hibiscus
  • Kava Kava Root: Very strong affecting Very strong sedative herb. I use Kava Kava on occasion with Valerian for my fibromalgia and insomnia and even depression. I am very educated on kava and would never recommend trying anything narcotic or sedative unless you are educated. That being said I use my kava blended into a tea or a drink either traditionally with milk and fat,but most of the time without. It really helps my pain, and relaxes me when I need it. I try and only use kava after my son is asleep at nights or on the weekends to limit use, as it is a very strong herb. I buy Raw Roots, that I personally process into powder each time I want to use it, and my Roots have an indefinite shelf life. As opposed to buying the fresh powder that expires after a while even in the fridge.http://www.kava.com/kava-information/kava-kava-benefits-and-side-effects/     https://www.1hourbreak.com/learn-about-kava/kava-kava/health-benefits/

    kava kava
    kava kava
  • Yerba Mate: Somewhat mild going herb This is stronger then coffee in caffeine, so It may be mild taste, but it will definitely wake you up in the morning, or if you need a pick me up in the afternoon. I love yerba mate dark roast, now with chicory and carob, it tastes just like coffee and it brews very dark. http://guayaki.com/mate/2931/Health-Benefits.html
  • Skullcap: Mild to strong affecting Skullcap can help anxiety and sleep. I use it in combination a with my Valerian and kava for a very strong sleepy time tea.http://www.anniesremedy.com/herb_detail257.php

    skullcap and kava tea
    skullcap and kava tea
  • Passion Flower: Mild to moderate affecting Sleepy flower, blends well with Valerian and chamomile. Its mildly sedative but not as bad as skullcap. http://www.anniesremedy.com/herb_detail293.php

How to clean Rose hips:

First you have to harvest them when they get the most red in the season, I believe its late fall after the roses have died. You will pick them, wash them, and cut in half. Scoop out the hair and seeds and wash again, chopping off the brown ends. Dehydrate or sundry or slow roast your rose hips until the moisture is out of them and process in the blender dry for a powder or keep whole for tea.

cut in half
cut in half
cut them in half
start to take the seeds out
take out the seeds
take out the seeds
scoop the seeds out
scoop the seeds out
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take the hair out with the seeds
clean them out good
clean them out good
washed rose hips de seeded
washed rose hips de seeded
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Naturally Sweet #2

Naturally sweet #2

I feel so forgetful, I made a whole blog post on how to sweeten things naturally and I forgot some of the major players in fruits and veggies. I mentioned dried fruit and bananas and date paste but you’ll be super surprised that the following fruits and vegetables can be helpful in baking also.

https://momsorganicbohofoodfun.wordpress.com/2015/04/07/naturally-sweet/

I just love hiding things like beans, veggies and even special flavors into my cooking. Even if not all of these things may be sweet, they are nutritious and good to eat, so why not add them to your dessert.

It tastes incredible steamed with carrots and mashed into baking as you would applesauce.

http://www.vegancookingwithlove.com/2013/03/vegan-applesauce-cake/

red and yellow beets
red and yellow beets
steamed carrots and beets
steamed carrots and beets
  • Berries fruit and or natural flavors: blackberries and rosehips shown below both provide a naturally sweet taste to baking, and are great to find locally if you have some. Bake berries into baked goods folding in after mixing your dry and wet together. For rosehips dry powder use in the dry mix, for natural flavors such as lemon or vanilla use in the wet mix.
blackberries and fresh rose hips
blackberries and fresh rose hips
dried prunes raisins and oranges are all naturally sweet
dried prunes raisins and oranges are all naturally sweet

Chocolate prune cake recipes:

http://godfoodlifesplat.blogspot.com/2011/05/chocolate-prune-cakecake-balls_20.html?m=1

http://theyogivegetarian.blogspot.com/2012/02/sticky-prune-cakevegan-no-added-sugar.html?m=1

http://www.food.com/recipe/raw-vegan-german-chocolate-cake-418169

http://forkbelly.com/veganchocolate-cake/

camu camu flavored gelatin candys
camu camu flavored gelatin candys
banana blueberry bread
banana blueberry bread
applesauce chia blueberry pie
applesauce chia blueberry pie
  • I recently made a rosehip and hibiscus flavored lemon meringue pie and it was really different and tasted extra fruity from the extra flavor, and even added some color. For berries and natural flavors do note that the color and taste of your baked goods will significantly change, the more you add.
rosehip and hibiscus lemon meringue pie
rosehip and hibiscus lemon meringue pie
apple pie and ice cream (great with cinnamon)
apple pie and ice cream (great with cinnamon)

here are some tips and recipes on rosehips if your interested.

http://gardening.about.com/od/rose1/f/RoseHips.htm

http://www.natureskills.com/wild-foods/rosehip-honey/

http://thevanillabeanblog.com/2013/05/meringues-with-rhubarb-curd-and-rosehip.html

http://www.essentialcuisine.com/recipes/elderflower-mousse-with-wareings-rosehip-meringue-violet-syrup-thyme-gel-little-town-dairy-yoghurt-sorbet-fresh-seasonal-lancashire-flowers/

Rhubarb and cranberries-

Rhubarb and cranberries are both naturally very sour, so you will have to cook them. cranberries are excellent in baking, but do remember to sweeten them up. Rhubarb is excellent to bake with check out my favorite step by step recipe for rhubarb cobbler here.

http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2011/06/rhubarb-cobbler/

close up Rhubarb
close up Rhubarb
lots of chopped Rhubarb
lots of chopped Rhubarb
cranberries and rhubarb
cranberries and rhubarb
carrot cake with cauliflower frosting
carrot cake with cauliflower frosting
  • Squash/butternut and zucchini steamed/roasted squash is great baked into muffins and bread.
deseeding butternut
deseeding butternut
butternut squash
butternut squash
yellow squash muffins, can also make with beet mash
yellow squash muffins, can also make with beet mash
pumpkin pie
pumpkin pie
squash blueberry muffin
squash blueberry muffin
10714583_635786183200237_263541475880726367_o
butternut squash salted biscuits
  • AvocadoI recently made the most fudgy amazing vegan chocolate brownies with avocado and date sugar.. recipe below.
avocado brownie
avocado brownie

And while you are there you better check out @chocolate covered katie cause she is Queen of blending veggies into desserts and my new baking idol.  http://chocolatecoveredkatie.com/