As we approach the cooler months, many of us are starting to come down with allergies and sickness. It is unavoidable in some ways as students are sneezing in classrooms and we all start to spend more time inside. But there are a few things we can keep in the cottage apothecary to boost our immunity and fight illness. Two very powerful ingredients that support these goals are garlic and honey. Fermented garlic honey is a common ancestral remedy and preventative herbal medicine that combines these two healing foods. Creating this remedy could not be more simple so let’s dive in!
Healing Properties of Garlic and Honey
Garlic is an incredible herb for treating flus, colds, and sore throats. It stimulates the production of white blood cells and is an antimicrobial, antibacterial, and antiseptic agent resulting in increased immune function, blood flow, and sulfur compounds in the body.
The medicinal properties of honey have been documented for many centuries by folk healers, shamans, traditional chinese medicine, ayurveda, and beyond. It is widely known to be antimicrobial, antibacterial, with Immunomodulatory properties. As a result, raw honey can support our bodies both internally and externally for safe and natural healing.
How to use fermented garlic honey
You can eat a clove of fermented garlic or a spoonful of the honey every day to support your immunity and overall health. You can also use them as ingredients in recipes such as salad dressings or sauces. It is very important to keep the fermented garlic honey raw however, because that is when its healing properties are most potent.
Fermented Honey Garlic
- 1-2 organic bulbs of raw garlic
- As much raw honey as you need to cover the garlic
- Peel each garlic clove
- Lightly smash your garlic cloves with the flat edge of a knife until the skin breaks
- Add the cloves to a clean glass jar
- Slowly pour honey over garlic until all garlic is covered. You might need to take breaks to allow the honey to drip to the bottom of the jar. You can also use a wooden spoon (don’t use metal because sometimes that can react with the ferment) to gently move the garlic and honey around. You are looking for each garlic clove to be coated in honey.
- Add enough honey so that every clove is coated, including the ones on top
- Add a small square of baking paper, cloth, or jar cover to the jar before adding the lid. Sometimes this might mean removing the rubber seal or only using the metal ring, depending on your jar. Just be sure your jar is not sealed tightly as the ferment will produce Co2.
- Store on your counter for a few weeks. Every day or so check in with your ferment by stirring (with a clean wooden spoon) or gently sealing, then turning the mixture to ensure all of the cloves are coated in honey. Just make sure to loosen or remove the seal again once you turn the jar!
- After a few weeks the honey will loosen and the garlic will become a little bit softer and might even change color (which is a normal fermentation reaction of garlic!). The garlic will be subdued in its flavor and the honey will taste a little bit like garlic.
- At this point the fermented garlic honey is ready to be stored and eaten. You can store in a cool dark place for many months, even a few years if stored well.