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Category : Beverages & Teas       Region : Northeast ~ Great Lakes       Rating : 5
Spruce Tea for coughs

Contributor : Added by Administrator

Tribal Affiliation : Austria -- Brenner Pass.

Orgin of Recipe : Offered by Bob Brenner ...who read about it once in a book, tried it

Type of Dish : All Indigenous Ingredients

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Ingredients

  • Equal volumes of:
  • New growth from the tips of spruce branches
  • Water

Directions

Due to allergies, I am plagued with chronic, although mild post nasal drip and the consequential cough. I'd read in a local ethnobotany publication that tea from the new growth at the tips of spruce branches was used by the original people here for soothing coughs. I was hiking in the mountains and when I stopped to rest, I recalled that article as I was looking at a huge spruce tree.


I gathered a handful of the new tips and put them in an oversized enamel cup 2/3 full of water and set it next to a small cookfire to get hot.
(Incidentally, I didn't remember about using the new growth until I tried to pull off a mature twig. Those prickles kinda brought tears to my eyes.)
After about 15 minutes, I tried a sip and found it to be bland tasting and a little stinky, not pitchy smelling like I expected. I finished it anyway because it was warm and the weather wasn't. I wasn't impressed.
Note: I put out the fire and moved on. About a half hour later it occurred to me that I hadn't been coughing and didn't again for a couple of more hours. The tea doesn't give that menthol or eucalytpus tingle like I've been taught by the Vick's company to expect but for me, it works much better.

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