Chamomile, a medicinal herb known worldwide for its remarkable medicinal properties, has been in popular use by adults and children alike for more than a thousand years. It is thought to be highly effective in curing various ailments, like an upset stomach, skin rashes, sleeplessness, joint pain, menstrual cramps, and nervous depression. However, research is still going on in various parts of the world to prove these chamomile benefits scientifically. However, chamomile flowers are dried and crushed for use in capsules, mouth washes, ointments, and tea. In fact, you can save a lot of money by growing and drying chamomile in your own backyard if you live in a Mediterranean or tropical country.
Here are a few simple steps that you can follow to dry chamomile at home:
- Pick up fresh chamomile flowers in morning. Make sure the flowers are free of any spots or infestation. Keep all the flowers aside in a colander.
- Place the colander of flowers in a bowl full of cold salt water. (4 tbsp. of salt in a bowl of cold water is sufficient)
- Swishing the flowers in salt water will facilitate removal of chafe, bugs, and floaters from the flowers.
- Remove the colander and drain off the salt water. Repeat all the above steps with clean water.
- Finally, things like salad spinners, paper towels, or dish towels can be used to dry these washed flowers. Set them out for at least 20 minutes to drain off all the excess water.
Other methods of drying chamomile flowers include air drying, sun drying, and oven drying. While air drying takes nearly 3-7 days to dry the flowers, sun drying takes just 6 hours to do it. Oven drying is still faster and can do the drying efficiently within 4 hours. Dried flowers can then be stored for up to 6 months in airtight jars.
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