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Freitag, 28. August 2015

Harvest time is near...

 It is that time of year again when I tend to get in somewhat of a frenzy. It has been a long time ago that I started to forage for at least part of my food. This means you have to harvest when it´s ripe, obviously. There is an almost spiritual, no, there IS a spiritual dimension to this. You actually live with the seasons and the tides of sun and moon, not with an esoteric mindset, but with a very down-to-earth feeling. If you don´t know it, it´s hard to describe, but that much I can say that it gives me a feeling of sense and purpose. Sometimes it´s plain stress, but if you hold in hand the fruit of your labour and the grace of the land, it gives you gratefulness and great joy. You know where it comes from, you say a thank you to no one in particular;-), and it´s more than food, or, in this case, drink. Above you can see a balloon of bramble/apple/grape/nettle/cinnamon/ginger mead.
Right to left in that lousy picture: Bramble syrup with rose petals and nettle, Hippocras mead with birch sap, birch sap yeast, Kwaß yeast, porter yeast, honey, sloe, grape, apple, brambles, rasperries, hawthorn leaves, flowers and berries, wild strawberries, elderberries, stinging nettle, ground ivy, elderflower, violets, clove, cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, allspice, galangal, some very few juniper berries and reduced tartarus plus some secret ingredients;-) (all of which are legal!;-)). The hippocras mead I made after recipes from Konrad von Megenberg, Hildegard von Bingen, Theophrastus Bombastus Paracelsus von Hohenheim, Edward Kelley and several other manuscripts from the high medieval ages to early modern times (Johannes Staricius, Andreas Tenzelius, etc.), valuable input by our senior blackmithing master, Kazakh Russian Viktor Paukow, plus some of my own humble experience;-). It was a right fuss to get something to read about this drink, I can tell you. Other than that I messed up with the clove, I have to be careful not to drink too much from it!;-)

It´s certainly a winter drink, reminding you of many long days of sun and radiant warmth, good for your health (blood circulation, against fever, flu and bronchitis, is de-cramping and thusly works for menstruational problems, too, relaxes the tonus and simply warms you up, and if you drink three cups it also works as a ... ummmm... erm... stimulans;-).

Fruits of my labour I am a bit proud of, for I am learning a lot by it. There´s a lot to do these days, apples ready for the harvest, pears and plums and sloe and elderberries and brambles waiting to be confected and preserved, still some blacksmithing going on and work to earn that prybar of power, whatsitsnamenow, yap, money...;-) I tend to forget...

Summer is nearing its end, and I will be tired in autumn and winter-as it should be.

And when all of my seasons have passed, I hopefully will be tired and content to sleep, too.

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