Citrus limon – Lemon

We are so used to lemons in our lives that we forget that they are also an important medicinal herb. Thought to be native to India, lemon trees were first grown in Europe in the 2nd century AD but are now cultivated in Mediterranean and sub-tropical climates worldwide. Propagated from seed in spring, they prefer well-drained soil and plenty of sun. The fruit is harvested in winter when the vitamin C content is at its highest.

Lemons contain bioflavonoids, Vitamins A, B1, B2, B3 and C. They are mucilaginous, antiseptic, anti-rheumatic, anti-bacterial, antioxidant and reduce fever. During the Middle Ages Lemons were a remedy for scurvy long before vitamin C was identified. Despite its acid content, once digested, lemon has an alkaline effect within the body, making it useful in rheumatic conditions where acidity could be the cause.

The volatile oil is antiseptic and antibacterial .The bioflavonoids strengthen the inner lining of blood vessels, especially veins and capillaries, and help counter varicose veins and easy bruising. Lemons antiseptic and cleansing actions make it valuable for those prone to arteriosclerosis, and to infections and fevers, especially of the stomach, liver and intestines.

Lemon is also useful as a general tonic for many chronic illnesses, for colds, flu and chest infections, it acts as a tonic for the liver and pancreas, improves the appetite and helps ease stomach acidity, ulcers, arthritis, gout and rheumatism.

Preparation:
Usually taken fresh, as fruit or in juice, add a little honey if it is too sour. A good liver and kidney tonic is to drink 2 tsp lemon juice in warm water every morning before taking  anything else. As a gargle, lemon juice is helpful for sore throats, gingivitis and mouth ulcers.
Try something different with a plain cupcake recipe.

LEMON CURD CUP CAKES
1 /2 cup butter
3 /4 cup sugar ( castor )
2 eggs
1 /2 cup flour – white
1 tsp baking powder
Pinch salt
1 /2 cup milk
Grated rind 1 /2 lemon

Lemon Curd
Cream butter and sugar – add eggs one at a time beat well between.
Sift dry ingredients together and fold into egg mixture, adding milk – lemon rind.
Fill 1 /2 cup cake papers with mixture
ADD 1 tsp lemon curd

Carefully cover the filling with cake mixture and bake at 180 degrees about 12 – 15 minutes. When you take the cup-cakes out of the oven you can top with a small amount of curd. Serve with yummy Greek yoghurt for a special treat.

Well another year gone. Wishing you all you wish yourself for the Festive Season,

Yours in herbs,
Diane Aldworth 082 808 1519 dragonair@lantic.net

Herbs for Health lemon