Recipes & Preparations

Just before Thanksgiving 2013, a letter to Rebecca at 25 days old sparked this Recipes page. Charles Garcia is a fabulous cook, and this page was created to capture the recipes he shares on Facebook. Enjoy!

on this page

Garcia Recipes

Recipes on this page.

Recipes on other pages!

Herbal Preparations

Herbs in Practice, on this page.

Ask for more! facebook icon Contact us!

See also Articles and Plants.

Garcia Recipes

Something Special

Charles' Stinging Nettle Quiche Recipe

Charles R. Garcia, Chef  fb CSHH

lori and usa harvesting stinging nettle 11-03-2014 fb/photo.php?fbid=609440789165530&set=pcb.609440865832189&type=1&permPage=1
Lori & Usa harvest stinging nettle November 13, 2014
stinging nettle pt. reyes park 11-03-2014
photos by Charles Garcia

Something Special: Stinging Nettle Quiche Lorraine

Yesterday, my friend Lori Pino and I went to Pt. Reyes on the hunt of the wild stinging nettle. Lori braved the harvest while I cheered her on. Today I'm going to enjoy the fruits of her labor by making a quiche.

First you will need...
 fresh nettles, about two and a half of the fresh plant,
 a pot of chicken broth,
 a cup of sliced mushrooms,
 a cup of thin sliced onion,
 1 1/2 cups of milk,
 two cups of shredded this case cheddar and monterey jack,
 1 Tablespoon all purpose flour, and
 six slices of bacon.

Simmer or boil the nettle leaves in a pot of chicken broth until the leaves and small stems are limp. This will take anywhere from fifteen minutes to thirty minutes. When done, don't throw the broth away.

Remove the nettle and place in a bowl. Freeze the broth and use for another day. At the same time put the bacon to cook on low. Wash and slice mushroom, slice onions and sauté in the bacon fat. If this is too bacon-y for you, then sauté in olive oil.

Add your eggs, milks, cheese, and flour in a blender. Mix well. Zzzzzing.

Pour into store-bought pie crust...I like Marie Callender's. With a fork, mix in the nettles. Slice or crumble cooked bacon on top along with onions and mushroom.

In a preheated oven, cooked at 350 for 40 minutes. Remove and let it cool a bit before slicing. If the mixture is too runny, cook for another ten minutes.

Enjoy with a cool white wine.

 — Charles R. GarciaTuesday, November 04, 2014 at 12:33pm PT

Secret Squash Recipe

Charles' Secret Squash Recipe

Charles R. Garcia, Chef fb CSHH

...we always had good thanksgivings days. ...Your mom wants this to be a special dinner
so she called me and asked for my secret squash dish recipe. So I gave it to her.
secret squash dish recipe.

Maybe someday she'll give it to you. But in case not... a large frying pan put
 3 parts olive oil and two parts butter and slowly heat.
 Slice one large yellow onion,
 crush three small cloves of garlic,
 slice up three zucchini and three yellow squash, and
 slice one large tomato.

Sauté every thing until it is medium hard and the onion is translucent.
Transfer everything into a baking dish and place in pre-heated oven at 350...
before that, sprinkle with mozzarella cheese and medium cheddar.
Cook until the cheese has browned slightly.
At that point everything should be done!

But shhhhhh! Don't tell anyone. It's a Garcia family secret.

 — Charles R. Garcia November 15, 2013 at 11pm

Mango Chutney Recipe 02june2019

Charles' Mango Chutney Recipe

Charles R. Garcia, Chef fb CSHH

Hey Facebook friends, herbalists, survivalists, preppers, gun nuts and crackpots I love! I wanted to do this live but circumstances made that too difficult for now. A few days ago I made some serious strawberry jam. MMM MMM! It was some of my best if I do say so...and I do. In a few minutes I'm heading back to the kitchen to make some mango chutney. Now making chutney is not a science it's an art. You can find several if not dozens of variations on how to make mango chutney. So I want to share MY recipe.

 3 medium apples, unpeeled, cored, and chopped
 3 large mangoes, unpeeled and chopped
 1 medium red onion, chopped
 1 cup sugar
 1 1/2 cup of brown sugar
 1 chopped jalapeno pepper
 1/2 cup golden or mission raisins
 1/2 cup white vinegar
 1/4 cup finely chopped peeled gingerroot
 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
 2 teaspoons red pepper flakes or powder
 1/2 teaspoon each: ground nutmeg, cinnamon, and salt
 1/2 all spice
 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
 2 tomatillos

Variations...add lemon or orange. Today I'll chop some oranges and add that. 
1/3 cup of pecans or walnuts

If any of you brave souls actually make this IM me and let me know how it turned out. Chutney is used on a variety of foods. Pork comes to mind. White fish. Chicken breasts. Rice. Crackers (Triscuits is a favorite of mine). One brave idiot who will remain unnamed told me he used it as a topping for vanilla ice cream. Umm, I don't recommend it. On the other hand, who knows? 
Okay, it's off to the kitchen!

 — Charles R. Garcia June 02, 2019 at 5:02pm

guacamole !

The Kains Avenue Guacamole Recipe

Charles R. Garcia, Chef fb CSHH

Created by 3 friends in 1978

  • 4 to 6 medium-size avocados
  • 1½ firm tomatoes, diced.
  • 1 chopped garlic clove
  • ¼ cup dice white onion
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • juice of ½ lemon
  • 1 cup La Victoria Salsa (medium)
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • Cilantro as garnish

Using whisk, mash avocadoes in a large bowl. Add olive oil. Stir and add, tomatoes, onions, salsa and garlic. Stir and mash larger pieces of tomato. Add lemon juice slowly. Taste. Add salt and pepper.

Place in decorative bowl and add cilantro as garnish.

Chill for 5 minutes in freezer.

Use as a dip or side dish with enchiladas, rice, or spicy meat dishes. Like

 — Charles R. Garcia October 5, 2014 at 6:53pm PT

Karen Roberts I do not remember you adding soap to it! (Cilantro) 😋 October 5, 2014 at 7:13pm PT

Michaela Maestas yum October 5, 2014 at 7:21pm PT

Charles Garcia I added cilantro on those rare occasions you were gone with what's his name or in Modesto. October 6, 2014 at 5:17pm PT

Karen Roberts Oh! Picky, picky me! You were sweet in all things guacamole! October 6, 2014 at 6:42pm PT

Charles Garcia I tended to over salt it, but I've learned since then. October 6, 2014 at 6:43pm PT

Karen Roberts I do not remember that. Maybe it was the chips. I have nothing but fond memories about our guacamole orgies! October 6, 2014 at 6:46pm PT

Charles Garcia I remember that sometimes that was our dinner!! LOL October 6, 2014 at 6:47pm PT



Throat Candies

Charles R. Garcia, Chef fb CSHH

In the far reaches of my memory I can see my mother making what she called in Spanish, throat candies. My guess is she learned this from her mother and not her dad. She took extra care when making them, taking her time, laying out a white clean cloth to put her tools on. It was only later when I was in grade school did I realize she was making lozenges. She always started the process with a decoction of many herbs, including spearmint out of the garden along with ground rosemary. It made the house smell…herby. You also can make herbal lozenges similar to hard candy, but you'll use tea made from medicinal herbs to form the liquid portion of the recipe. Herbal lozenges soothe inflamed mucous membranes and help suppress coughing, depending on the herbs you use. For best results, choose a mucilaginous herb such as marshmallow, slippery elm, or licorice root, as your carrier for the stronger herbs.

Things You'll Need
 • 9-by-13-inch baking pan
 • Butter or vegetable oil cooking spray
 • Large saucepan
 • 3 tbsp. dried herbs
 • 4 1/2 cups granulated sugar
 • 2 quart-sized glass jars with lids

Step 1
Grease a 9-by-13-inch glass baking pan with butter, or spray lightly with vegetable oil cooking spray. Place in the refrigerator.

Step 2
Bring 1 1/2 cups water to a boil over medium-high heat in a large saucepan. Turn off the heat, add the dried herbs, cover and steep for 20 minutes.

Step 3
Strain the herbs from the liquid and discard the spent plant material. Return the liquid to the pan, add the granulated sugar and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Do not stir.

Step 4
Continue boiling until the mixture reaches the hard ball stage, about 35 to 50 minutes. Check if the mixture has reached this stage by dipping out a small ball and dropping it into a glass of cold water. If it keeps its shape, the mixture is ready. If it breaks apart, boil longer.

Step 5
Pour the mixture into the chilled, greased pan. Score with a knife into small, 1-inch squares before it hardens. Allow the mixture to stand for at least an hour.

Step 6
Remove the mixture from the pan once cool, and break into pieces along the score lines. Store the herbal lozenges in glass jars with tight-fitting lids.

Tips and Warnings
• For best results, use dried herbs with cough suppressant or throat soothing properties. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, peppermint, eucalyptus, marshmallow, slippery elm, licorice, lobelia, mullein, stinging nettle and thyme may provide some relief from sore throat or cough.
• This recipe should fill two quart-sized jars.
• Use within six months for the best results.
• The sugar and herbal tea mixture typically reaches the hard ball stage somewhere between 247 and 252 degrees F, according to Shatoiya De la Tour in her book, "Earth Mother Herbal."
• A candy thermometer will tell you when the mixture reaches this point, although you'll still need to manually check by dropping a small amount in cold water.

• University of Maryland Medical Center: Cough
• "Earth Mother Herbal;" Shatoiya De la Tour and Richard De la Tour; 2002
• "The Complete Guide to Herbal Medicines;" Charles W. Fetrow and Juan R. Avila; 2000

 — Charles R. Garcia August 4, 2014 at 12:46am PT

Ingrid Guthrie You are a Treasure Trove, Mr. Charles! Thank You! August 4, 2014 at 4:30am PT

Bonnie Kavanagh Charles, could you substitute honey for the sugar? August 4, 2014 at 4:57am PT

shotgun syrup

Shotgun Syrup

Charles R. Garcia fb The Herbal Resistance

Basic Shotgun Syrup: All amounts are approximate...

  • 64 oz dark honey
  • 2 1/2 oz fennel
  • 1 oz fresh thyme
  • 1 oz hard stick cinnamon...
  • 1/2 oz fresh rosemary
  • 16-20 oz of water
  • 1 oz sliced ginger
  • If available...1 oz osha root
  • If available...1 oz tincture of cannabis

In 32 oz of honey, add the water and all ingredients with exception of cannabis tincture. Slow cook and stir until 1/3 original volume. Add the second 32 oz of honey and slow cook until 1/2 or 1/3 volume remains. Add the tincture of cannabis and stir in rapidly. When the bubbling subsides strain out ingredients. The liquid should be placed in 8 oz canning jars and placed in the fridge. Use as needed.  — Charles R. Garcia October 7, 2013 at 12:17am

Shotgun Syrup in-the-making fb

Charles Garcia Those are fennel seeds. October 7 at 12:46am

Carol Phillips Take it by the spoonful?.. Or add it to something like tea? October 7 at 4:04am via mobile

Virginia Lee Adi looks like a very adaptable and usable recipe. Thanks! October 7 at 9:05am

Charles Garcia Take it by the chasers. October 7 at 10:19am

Anya Stagakis thanks for posting this Charles,it looks like a great recipe! While I hope no one around me becomes sick, I am interested in trying this one out soon... October 9 at 10:53pm

Danika Anderson Is there a specific reason for the dark honey? October 10 at 6:01pm

Charles Garcia Dark honey tends to have more antibiotic properties. October 10 at 6:03pm

Danika Anderson Right. My first choice has always been Manuka honey; me being a biased Kiwi and feeling the most potent medicine comes from NZ forest's... Being so cost prohibitive for me now in BC, I've simply switched to my local beekeeper's honey and wax and not thought about other types of dark honey's. I'm on the look out now. :) October 10 at 6:07pm

Phil Reed Can we use any size buckshot for this ? October 11 at 3:30pm

Charles Garcia I like double-O myself. October 11 at 3:35pm

Phil Reed #4 is also nice ;) October 11 at 3:36pm

Charles Garcia Can't miss. (I thought I sent you some of this a few years back?) October 11 at 3:36pm

Phil Reed Cathy would know; I'm not sure... October 11 at 3:37pm

Shotgun Syrup Addendum fb The Herbal Resistance

The homeless I treat use alot of this during the winter. When my daughters were involved in the Dickens Christmas Faire, many an actor and many of the carolers used this. It is non narcotic, you can take as much as you need (assuming your not diabetic), and it is soothing. While not everyone likes the taste of fennel most can get passed it. The cinnamon helps immensely with that issue. The thyme kills bacteria on contact. The rosemary can help kick up the immune system and is antiviral. So it is a safe syrup. DO NOT GIVE TO BABIES. Honey is dangerous to their little systems. — Charles R. Garcia October 7, 2013 at 12:17am

Charles Garcia One year I also added rose hips. That was possibly my most effective batch. October 7 at 1:08am

Betsy Yarrow Stevens Thank you for sharing this recipe, Charles. I'm definitely going to make it. And just wanted you to know that I for one appreciate the stories you tell when you share your knowledge as well. October 7 at 7:37am via mobile

Shotgun Syrup - Follow-On fb The Herbal Resistance

For those wondering why I use tincture of cannabis in my shotgun was a good remedy for severe coughing over 100 plus years ago. It was a replacement for the addictive laudanum and morphine. The amount added to the syrup won't get you high, but it will affect the worst of spasmodic coughs.
— Charles R. Garcia
October 7, 2013 at 1:14am

Jo Powell yes it is amazing for coughs. although kind of ironic since smoking it often causes coughing. October 7 at 1:15am

Charles Garcia Very ironic. October 7 at 1:15am

Carol Phillips Too bad that its not something you can easily obtain... October 7 at 4:02am via mobile



Charles R. Garcia, Director fb CSHH

Pastilla para la tos (Cough Drops)

Image: Whiteboard - Pastillas Making pastillas
mixing ingredients

hand-rolling pastillas
rolling pastillas

honey coating pastillas
coating pastillas

skin cream

Skin Creme

Charles R. Garcia, Director fb CSHH

Skin Creme - from Medicine Class

  • 50 grams Shea Butter (roughly two ounces)
  • 50 grams Wax
  • 1 cup Coconut Butter
  • 2 cups infused Rosemary Oil
  • 1 cup rose petals
  • 1/4 teaspoon lavender essential oil
  • 1/3 cup Calendula Blossoms
  • 25 grams vitamin E oil
  • 1/4 cup of cool water

Slowly melt coconut butter, Shea butter, wax until liquid. Add infused oil of rosemary. Stir. Add calendula and rose blossoms. After 30 minutes add vitamin E oil. Stir for five minutes. Add lavender essential oil. Pour warm mixture into bowl, and water, and whip with blender until smooth. When mixture is semi-solid scoop into tins.

Charles R. Garcia May 27, 2014 at 5:13pm PT

veronica stirring skin creme
veronica stirring skin creme

simmering rose petals for skin creme
simmering rose petals for skin creme

basic salve plus!

Green Comfrey Salve

Charles R. Garcia, Director fb CSHH

Basic Green (comfrey) Salve

A comfrey salve is used for injuries under the skin such as bruises, torn ligaments, muscles, or broken bones. It can be used on open wounds IF the wound is completely cleaned of debris or infectious materials. But generally this is not advised. The Green Salve can be modified for pain issues, skin repair, and other body concerns.

Pick at least one half pound of the leaf and remove the center vein. Tear or cut the remaining leaves into small portions.

In a large pot smelt one half to one pound of parafin with 64 oz of olive oil. Be sure the paraffin is not boiling when you add the comfrey leaves. Due to the high quantity of moisture in the leaves, the wax will begin to boil. Make certain it does not overflow. Stir continuously until enough water has boiled off that there is no danger of overflow.

At this point other herbs can be added, such as lavender, marigold, rosemary (for bacterial protection), white sage (for a stronger bacterial protection), cannabis oil or tincture for pain, plantain (the weed - not the banana) to help with skin protection, black nightshade as an emollient, or thyme for a kill-on-contact anti-bacterial.

Making the salve is tedious but should be rushed. Oftentimes a crock pot is used, but often the salve maker forgets to stir the mix and allows the plant material to settle and scorch at the bottom of the pot.

After three to five hours, strain out the material…and pour the liquefied salve into a large bowl. Take out a teaspoon and let it congeal on a cool plate. If the substance is too liquid or creamy, return everything to the pot and add another quarter pound of paraffin. Allow this to melt, stir for 15 minutes, and repeat the cooling process. While the salve is still soft, spoon into small containers.

Charles R. Garcia Wednesday, October 8, 2014 at 10:49pm PT · Edited


Wilderness Salve 2012
Wilderness Salve 2012 Herbfest

image comfrey patch
comfrey patch


image: crockpot basic salve ingredients
crockpot, basic salve ingredients

image comfrey plant
comfrey plant

Ben Blackburn Is there supposed to by no oil, or did I miss it? Wednesday October 8, 2014 at 11:51pm PT

Charles Garcia Brain dead me, Add 64 oz olive oil. Thursday October 9, 2014 at 12:04am PT

Ben Blackburn Ok, I didn't see a way it would end up anything other than really healing candles! That sounds more familiar. smiley face

(I am still using the Green Salve from the last High Sierra Fest, and it keeps working miracles. It has been described as feeling like a Blessing when applied.) Thursday October 9, 2014 at 12:04am PT

Halyna Shepko why paraffin and not beeswax? Thursday October 9, 2014 at 3:02am PT

Shelley Sisson Can beeswax be used instead of paraffin? I assume quantities can be halved or quartered to make a smaller amount? Thursday October 9, 2014 at 6:22am PT

Michaela Maestas bees wax is the best Thursday October 9, 2014 at 8:22am PT

Charles Garcia Beeswax makes a very hard salve. I like adding small amounts at the end. Thursday October 9, 2014 at 12:21pm PT

Lauren Abbey Stauber Why do you cut out the center vein? Friday October 10, 2014 at 8:15pm PT

Charles Garcia Comfrey has a great amount of water. The center vein has much of it. To prevent boiling over it is best to remove as much liquid as possible. Saturday October 11, 2014 at 2:41pm PT

Lauren Abbey Stauber Makes sense. Sunday October 12, 2014 at 8:13am PT

yummy and powerful

Garlic and Honey

Charles R. Garcia, Director fb CSHH

Ingredients: Garlic cloves Honey

Peel garlic cloves and put them in a jar. Add honey, a little at a time over a couple of days until the jar is full. Set in a warm window for 2 weeks to a month or until the garlic has turned somewhat opaque and all the garlic flavor has been transferred to the honey.

This garlic honey is an excellent cough syrup. Just take a teaspoonful every couple of hours or whenever it seems necessary. You must remember though, that the honey has a lot of concentrated garlic power in it and one teaspoonful can represent many cloves of garlic. If you are giving this syrup to a child, you should dilute each spoonful with a bit of water. Garlic honey also soothes a sore throat. As an application for acne or herpes it has no equal because it is both healing, soothing and slightly anesthetic. Some cooks like to baste their chicken with this garlic honey mixture.

Here's a short list of other disorders which, studies show, can be eased with regular doses of garlic and honey.

  • ARTHRITIS: Garlic taken daily helps ease the pain and possibly eliminate the disorder by stimulating the immune system.
  • ASTHMA: A combination of garlic and honey can help stop an attack if taken right away, say herbal practitioners.
  • BLADDER INFECTIONS: Garlic has proven effective in killing the bacteria responsible for recurrent bladder infections.
  • BLOOD PRESSURE: Garlic and onions are both packed with allicin, selenium and other nutrients which, studies show, help keep hypertension under control.
  • CANCER: For many years the National Cancer Institute has been studying how common foods can help safeguard against this killer disease -\-\ and garlic has definitely proved to be a formidable weapon. It is a member of a food group that contains powerful phytochemicals -\-\ compounds researchers believe inhibit cancer growth. The pungent herb may also be effective in preventing the onset of deadly colon cancer, report researchers at the prestigious University of Texas M. D. Anderson Hospital.
  • CHOLESTEROL: Heart-damaging LDL cholesterol can be reduced by eating a moderate amount of raw garlic or a couple of garlic pills on a daily basis, studies show.
  • COLDS: This remedy won't make you popular at parties, but it should nip your cold in the bud: Chew a bit of garlic and honey before going out in crowds. Do this every hour if possible.
  • COUGHS: A syrup made of raw garlic and honey can quell the toughest cough. Mince six cloves of garlic and put them in a jar with a cup of honey, then let it sit for about two hours. When your cough gets bad, take a teaspoon and enjoy the relief. This can also be effective in pill form. Garlic tea is also an effective cough remedy. To make it, add three minced cloves to a cup of just boiled water and let the mixture steep for about ten minutes. Strain out the garlic bits and drink the remaining liquid. But don't throw out the garlic -\-\ you can add them to sup or other dishes at dinnertime.
  • DROWSINESS: Chew and swallow a teaspoon of garlic honey. This will perk you up almost immediately.
  • FOOD POISONING: Garlic has long been recognized as an effective antidote to many common forms of food poisoning. Just to be on the safe side, always consult your local poison control center should you or anyone in your family show signs of serious food poisoning. Quick action can save lives.
  • FUNGUS INFECTIONS: Whether its athlete's foot or any other common fungal infection, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. You can ward off any kind of fungal infection by adding one or two cloves of fresh garlic to your diet every day. A student in Maryland dealt with a fungal toe infection using garlic honey.
  • GINGIVITIS: This disorder is characterized by red, swollen or bleeding gums, and often results from poor dental hygiene. To alleviate the symptoms, take a capsule containing garlic and parsley extract every four hours for three days.
  • HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE: Daily doses of garlic fed to patients by Prof. F. G. Piotrowski of the University of Geneva produced the first clinical evidence of how amazingly effective garlic is in relieving hypertension and its accompanying symptoms of chest pains and dizziness. Garlic honey has produced the same effects.
  • INDIGESTION: Two teaspoons after lunch and dinner immediately banishes indigestion because garlic helps stimulate the secretion of digestive juices.
  • INSECT STINGS: Put some garlic honey over the sting and wrap it in a bandage: leave it for about two hours. 
    October 22, 2013 at 3:38pm

Lee E. Bingham-Redgrave My 10 year old LOVES garlic honey when he is sick! He gets sad if we are out! And the funniest part is.. he haaaaates honey in any other context! But if you make it taste like garlic, he'll eat a raw spoonful and lick the friggin spoon. :) October 22, 2013 at 3:51pm

old standard

Cough Syrup Expectorant

Charles R. Garcia, Director fb CSHH

from Medicine Class

By popular request of the students we are making a cough syrup expectorant tonight. The base of our syrup are fennel seeds, cinnamon sticks, and lots of water. When simmered to about one third of the original amount of water, 40 plus oz of dark honey is added to the base, along with fresh chopped Wild Ginger, fresh thyme and rosemary. When the volume is simmered down to one third the orignal volume, the plant material can be separated and the syrup can be decanted into smaller jars and sealed.

Variations include adding a cannabis tinctucture for severe coughing spasm, Yerba Mansa for bronchial infections, and usnea tinctures for pnuemonia.

Charles R. Garcia June 10, 2014 at 2:08pm PT

The honey soothes, how it works is anyone's guess. My guess is it acts locally. The fennel and cinnamon are both antispasmodics for lungs and stomach. Traditionally it is believed they worked directly on the lungs. The cannabis, which I ONLY use for rib breaking coughs, work directly on the brain.

Other variations my mom used were spearmint, yerba buena, and sometimes yerba santa when she could find it. One of the constituents in Yerba Santa is in Robitusson. You can taste it. Yuck! Had I been more mobile this year I would have gone hunting for it up on Mt. Diablo.

Charles R. Garcia June 11, 2014 at 3:14pm PT


Bird Flu!

Charles R. Garcia, Director fb CSHH

Osha, lomatium, elderberry. lots of steam with E.O. of rosemary and thyme,
and break out that old copy of Forever Faire.

Charles R. Garcia January 09, 2014 at 2:49pm PT