An herbal extract is the herbs essence or oils mixed in a solution-usually alcohol. You can use extracts to flavor candies, baked goods, make your own perfumes, or make scented candles.
How to Make Your Own Herbal Extract
Gather your herb of choice fresh from your garden or the market. Using a mortar and pestle, grind down to a pulp the selected herbs. Then once mashed, take the herb and put it in a solution of either alcohol, pure distilled vinegar, corn oil, sunflower oil, or olive oil.
If you are using alcohol, never ever use Isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol-this is not meant for consumption. Back in the day our grandmothers and their mothers would use 180 proof edible alcohol, but that is a little tricky to find these days. So instead, use vodka! Vodka is half water half alcohol in equal volumes in 100 proof.
The measurements of herbs to liquid of any of the liquids mentioned above is 2 Tbl. mashed herb to 3/4 c. liquid.
Mix and shake the solution well, keep in a warm spot in your home, and shake daily for 3 weeks.
Citrus Extract Recipe:
Peel away the outer skin of your citrus of choice- this layer is called the Zest. Be careful not to use the white layer beneath called the Pith. Fill a wide mouthed bottle about 1/3 of the way up with your fresh zest. Next pour in to fill the remaining 2/3 of the bottle with alcohol. Let this mixture set for 2 weeks, shaking its contents 2 times a day. Strain out the zest chunks, and then bottle your new citrus extract.