A Chinese formula prescribing the type and amount of herbs required to prepare the Chinese Tonic/Herbal Wine
Hi there, dear friends 😀
This Chinese prescription for making our own tonic wine was given to me by the same friend that taught me the Miracle Vegetable Soup.
My friend said that while the vegetable soup is consumed to remove toxins and balance back our body’s health, this Chinese tonic or herbal wine is taken to nourish our health. This is a “poh chau” (a nourishing or tonic wine in the Cantonese Chinese dialect) and is more popularly known as the “Mao Zedong Tonic Wine.” 😆
He mentioned this tonic wine was taken regularly by Mao Zedong to maintain his good health until he passed away at 84 years old in 1976. Mao Zedong was the former communist party leader of China.
So, I decided to try this tonic wine on my family and I have prepared some in my big glass jar – it should be ready on 22 October. I was told this wine is very good for strengthening one’s backbone (“poh yew guat” in Cantonese”) and good health.
I brought the Chinese prescription (Chinese medicinal formula or “yeok fong” in Cantonese) to one of my regular Chinese medical halls (shops) to get the herbs ready for making the tonic wine. I showed the elderly gentleman boss my print out of this tonic wine formula and told him that a friend has recommended that I make this tonic wine for my family.
Wow, I found out that this prescription has been circulating around for many years already. The boss took one look at my printout (prescription formula) and he went to refer to his dusty, old book that was filled with all types of prescription formulas for various ailments and tonics. He has the same formula as the one I showed him, all neatly handwritten onto one of the yellowed pages in his old book. 😀
Here is the “recipe” for homemade Mao Zedong Tonic Wine :-
Various types and amounts of herbs as specified in the Chinese prescription.
Please note that I decided to make a double batch of wine and the herbs shown here are double the portions. I thought since it takes some time to prepare this good stuff and my family is big, I may as well make more. 😆
Following the amount of herbs as per the prescription given above, you will need 2 katis of distilled white wine or 2 bottles of 640 ml Chinese white wine.
In my case of double recipe, I used 4 bottles of wine instead. Don’t throw away the empty wine bottles but keep them to contain the tonic wine when it is ready for harvesting/consumtion. 💡
One kati or 500 gms sugar
Method of preparation :-
1) Place the “inner shavings of cinnamon sticks” at the bottom of a clean glass jar
2) Pour in the rest of the herbs
Oh, I had added a large handful of woflberries (gei ji) as I thought it is very good for nourishing our eyes. However, in hindsight, I thought it was a mistake to do so as the berries had soaked up more of the wine. 😳
3) Pour in the Chinese wine, cover the jar and leave overnight
4) After the herbs have been immersed in the wine for 1 day and 1 night (heheh, this is following exactly the instructions in Chinese speak 😆 ) i.e. 24 hours later, add in the sugar.
5) Seal the jar tightly and leave it in a cool dark place. In my case, I just wrapped the jar with some newspapers and leave it at one cool corner of my kitchen.
6) Wine is ready for consumption after 60 days.
I confirmed with the boss of the medical hall – this wine is not heaty and is safe for consumption from teenagers to elderly people.
To take the tonic wine, just mix 1 small Chinese teacup or 1 “peck” (or peg? not sure if this is a Chinese or Western term) with 1/4 to 1/2 cup of room temperature boiled water and drink.
Can take it anytime during the day or night, just before sleeping. My friend takes daily the vegetable soup in the morning and the tonic wine at night. He has extremely good health and has not been sick for many years already. 😀
When I go back to this medical shop later, I will ask the boss again in details the health benefits of this Mao Zedong Tonic Wine and will list them here for your info. Also, I will take a photo of the wine in the jar when it is ready and show you. 😉
Meanwhile, I wish you Good Health! 😀
With best wishes,
Added on 26 December, 2010 –
Harvesting, Tasting & Review/Feedback
- This was how I wrapped up the glass container – with newspapers and taped at the top – easy disposal later.
- The Reveal – Wine is darker upon maturity – this wine is about 4 months old
- To drain every drop of goodness – I tilted the bottle over a large strainer onto a pot. Do this when you have scooped as much of the tonic wine into bottles
- About 3 1/2 bottles of tonic wine was yielded
- Recommended dosage of Mao Zedong Tonic Wine – take a small Chinese tea cup or a Chinese soup spoon full, add a little hot water to mix and drink
My review of the tonic wine
- Very aromatic in the herbal sense
- Very strong alcohol content (well, for someone like me who hardly drinks :oops:)
- Very sweet (I wonder if I could reduce the sugar amount)
- Due to the overly alcoholic and sweet nature of this wine, you may want to add more hot water
- After drinking the wine, I can feel it go through my system very fast – felt a little tipsy and sleepy and it was in the afternoon!
- I recommend that this wine is taken at night just before bed, because I slept a good 4 hours in the afternoon after drinking this tonic wine and I am not used to afternoon naps! 😆