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Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Texas Loquat Cough Syrup

Loquat cough syrup is a popular remedy in Chinese Herbal Medicine. I got pretty annoyed in Austin one year when a local clinic refused to provide it without a prescription to my friend for her and her child, especially since Loquats are prolific here in Central Texas. I looked at several recipes and made a batch and it is absolutely delicious and works great to soothe and relax coughs. Its hard to recreate mostly because loquat season is short and sneaky. They are there ripe on the trees and then all of a sudden gone.....
I almost missed this season except that my student found one the last trees making its offering this year at a local coffeehouse and got me about 5 pounds. Thanks Mallory!

This is the way I went about processing:

5pds of loquats in a crock pot with enough water to cover the fruit.
Simmer the fruit until tender and then mash into the water. Let steep on low for another couple of hours
Strain out pits and skins and pulp, return to pot and allow to cool.
Add in 1-3 oz of other antispasmodic, calming, or demulcent herbs. In my case I chose a popular recipe and amended it. I added about 1 oz of licorice, 1 oz of fresh ginger into about 1 quart of liquid. I let the roots sit for about 2 hours in the cool liquid(a little herbal trick with roots that have certain types of properties you are trying to extract--thank you James Green) and then simmered it for about 20 min. I turned off the heat and then added another 1/2 oz of spearmint and let it steep another 10 min. Allow to cool
Strain the liquid thru fine mesh and add pure organic sugar or raw honey to preserve at a rate of 1:1
In texas I keep all my syrups in the fridge because they ferment easily, which sometimes isnt so bad

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