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Thread: Potion Ingredients

  1. #1
    Seventh Year Ravenclaw
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    Potion Ingredients

    Greetings!

    In the story I am writing, the first potion the first-years brew in class is a simple thickening solution, which merely increases the consistency of any liquid to which it is added.

    I am trying to think of ingredients and proportions that would be used in such a potion, but I know next to nothing about this sort of thing. Does anybody have any suggestions on how to make the simple thickening potion I described?

    Thanks.

    Tim the Enchanter

  2. #2
    greennotebook
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    This really wouldn't be a very difficult potion, would it? In cooking, you might add flour or starch to a gravy to start thickening it, or you could add pureed vegetables or some dairy products like sour cream or milk to soup. Honestly, the idea of adding a solution to liquids to thicken them feels counter-intuitive.

    Do you need to make a potion for this? Could you instead have a lesson on general techniques used to thicken potions using a few different hands-on problem-solving examples? Students who know a few general principles could figure out how to apply them to a few different potions.

    If you need a thickening potion for a plot device, however, maybe there's some sort of paralyzing venom you could use as an ingredient. Something that makes a human feel as though s/he is thickening, or the air is thickening around him/her, might have a magical affect on potions.

  3. #3
    Wizengamot Ravenclaw
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    I do happening to know that Flobberworm mucus is used as a thinkening agent in potion ingredients. Something I learned while studying Magical Creatures.

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  4. #4
    Seventh Year Ravenclaw
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    Quote Originally Posted by greennotebook
    This really wouldn't be a very difficult potion, would it? In cooking, you might add flour or starch to a gravy to start thickening it, or you could add pureed vegetables or some dairy products like sour cream or milk to soup. Honestly, the idea of adding a solution to liquids to thicken them feels counter-intuitive.

    Do you need to make a potion for this? Could you instead have a lesson on general techniques used to thicken potions using a few different hands-on problem-solving examples? Students who know a few general principles could figure out how to apply them to a few different potions.

    If you need a thickening potion for a plot device, however, maybe there's some sort of paralyzing venom you could use as an ingredient. Something that makes a human feel as though s/he is thickening, or the air is thickening around him/her, might have a magical affect on potions.
    Ah. I guess this shows how much I know about Potions, or cooking for that matter.

    All I'm looking for is a very simple potion that first-years would brew on their first day of class. The Thickening Solution was just something I came up with off the top of my head, and doesn't work too well, I suppose. That said, does anyone have any good ideas for an easy potion and the ingredients involved?

    Tim the Enchanter

  5. #5
    Wizengamot Ravenclaw
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    Hmm, me thinks I have a few ideas for how to do it, combining knowledge of cooking and all I learned in the forum Potions class.

    I thing for the base you would combine equal parts Flobberworm mucus and water for solubility. Then, like greennotebook said, you would need something akin to flour. The library under the old Potions class actually has a whole list of magical plants you could choose from, maybe several different ones in a mixture.

    I also know from cooking pasta when you want a sause to thicken, you have to let it set off the burner for about five minutes. Maybe the same principle could be applied to potion making.

    I doubt you would really have anything chunky in this sort of potion, so the student would probably have to either finely grind the ingredients or strain them.

    This is just what I have for now. I will dwell on it some more, though.

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  6. #6
    greennotebook
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    The first potion Harry brews as a first year is "a simple potion to cure boils" (SS, American Edition, pg. 138). Ingredients specifically mentioned are dried nettles, crushed snake fangs, horn slugs and porcupine quills.

  7. #7
    Seventh Year Ravenclaw
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    Quote Originally Posted by greennotebook
    The first potion Harry brews as a first year is "a simple potion to cure boils" (SS, American Edition, pg. 138). Ingredients specifically mentioned are dried nettles, crushed snake fangs, horn slugs and porcupine quills.
    True, but I'd like to avoid copying what Rowling did. Considering that my story doesn't take place at Hogwarts, I don't want to use the same potion Snape assigned for the first class.

    Tim the Enchanter

  8. #8
    Wizengamot Ravenclaw
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    I think you have a good idea with the thicking potion, but what I really think you need to have planned out is what it is intended to be used for. Just to show the readers how this potion is different from just an ingredient that would make a potion thicker.

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  9. #9
    Wizengamot Hufflepuff
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    From a Muggle/cooking point of view - lemon juice thickens any sauces you make, as do adding cornflour - or arrowroot powder (makes a liquid gelatinous).

    With cornflour (and arrowroot) you need to mix it to a paste first and then add it to whatever liquid you're cooking - so you can use liquids to thicken other liquids (Am I making sense?)

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  10. #10
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    Something else that seems to be important is the amount of time potions are to be brew, but how many stirs they have. Something else I would do is research numerology to try and figure out how this could be used to your benefit.

    Something else I have been thinking of is what do you really want to be signifigant in this chapter? If you included that, that would also be something that could be incorperated into the actual potion-making.

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