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Horehound-Marrubium Vulgare - by Esther Chambliss

The name horehound comes from the Old English term 'harhume' meaning a downy plant. Horehound is a bushy perennial herb that forms a 12" to 18" wide club of wooly grayish green ruffled heart-shaped aromatic leaves. It blooms in midsummer with small white flowers along the upper stems of the plant. Horehound self-sows from its seeds and spreads well, clip the stems prior to flowering to keep it in its place in your garden. Horehound will grow in full sun in poor, well-drained soil. The Romans valued this herb and the seventeenth century English settlers brought plants with them to the new world. This fresh herb has been used for centuries in teas to soothe sore throats and made into a candy for coughs.

Horehound Candy
1c horehound leaves 1tsp crushed anise seed
1 quart water 1 1/2 lbs granulated sugar
1 1/2 lbs brown sugar butter

Boil horehound leaves and anise seed in the water (spring water or well water was used) for 20 minutes and strain through cheesecloth. Add the sugar to the remaining liquid and cook over a low heat slowly until sugar is dissolved. Once the sugar is dissolved, bring to a boil over moderate heat until the syrup hardens when dropped from a spoon into cold water. Remove from heat and pour into a buttered pan and when cool, mark into small squares. A glass or stainless steel pan is best.

Horehound Tea
1 good handful of horehound leaves
1 quart water (spring or well water was used)
2T granulated sugar
1 lemon
1tsp anise seed (optional)

Put leaves into an unchipped enamel kettle. (If desired, add the 1 tsp of anise seed at this time.) Add water and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from heat, strain while pressing the leaves to remove as much liquid as possible. Add the sugar and the juice of the lemon and cool.
Note: anise seed has a soothing effect on the throat