Thursday, 11 January 2018

Winter Tips from #LondonWalks Guides No.1. How To Brew Your Own Cough Mixture (!)

DC Editor Adam writes…

Outside in all weathers, we London Walks guides know a thing or two about battling the cold weather.

In this short series we're sharing our winter weather tips with our lovely London Walkers, a hardy bunch who join us rain or sleet in the winter months.

I'll get the ball rolling with my very own recipe for a sore throat remedy…

The Daily Constitutional Cough Tincture

I fear I am beginning a journey into eccentric old age akin to that of Kurtz in Conrad's Heart of Darkness – when they send a team to get me back, I will be too far gone to ever return home.

I have taken to making my own cough medicine.

In my all-too-rare moments of clarity I catch sight of myself and sigh, "Dearie me."

Having said that, it is outstanding cough medicine.

Here's the recipe…

You will need…

50g Soft Eating Liquorice

Balsamic Vinegar

Dried Sage

Chamomile flowers


Whole cloves


Chop up the liquorice into small pieces and place in a pan with half a mug of water.

Add a good glug of Balsamic Vinegar and 6 cloves.

Bring to the boil, stirring continually, and simmer until the mixture is slightly gloopy and the liquorice has more or less dissolved.

While the mixture simmers…

In a mug or small teapot, place three heaped teaspoons of dried sage and one teaspoon of chamomile flowers. Fill with boiling water and allow to brew for a few minutes – for about as long as a good cup of builder’s tea.

Strain the mixture and add the result to the simmering liquorice solution.

Stir in 2-3 table spoons of honey.

Strain into a jar or bottle.

How To Take…

This tincture works best as a gargle.

Exercise caution with the cloves and never replace them with clove oil, which is much more potent and can burn, even small quantities.

And please take note: don’t keep it hanging around in a bottle/jar for more than two days, due to lack of preservatives. Similarly, don’t brew up vast amounts of the stuff as it is sure to go off and/or blow up your medicine cabinet.

Any suggestions London Walkers & Daily Constitutionalists? Which cold and cough remedies do you swear by? Drop me a line at the usual address

A London Walk costs £10 – £8 concession. To join a London Walk, simply meet your guide at the designated tube station at the appointed time. Details of all London Walks can be found at

No comments:

Post a Comment