In the world of herbal potions, an elixir is at the top of my list. They're yummy, sweet, and are a fantastic way to capture the beauty of a fresh plant, not just its medicine.
Here's how I made a Tulsi Elixir, but you can use all sorts of herbs- for example, try fresh Chamomile! This is a great time of year to make elixirs because any outdoor plants are about to die back for the winter, and potted plants moving indoors need haircuts too, so there's one last harvest available.
Fresh Tulsi Elixir
Wash, spin dry, and roughly chop your herbs. Lightly pack into a large jar so they fit snugly but aren't fully squashed down.
Add enough honey to fill 1/3 to 1/4 of the jar.
Fill up to jar shoulders with brandy. Plants will begin to float.
Use a long spoon handle to gently stir and prod herbs to release air bubbles. Keep adding brandy to keep herbs submerged. Once all bubbles have stopped rising, fill jar to top and tightly put on lid.
Now- turn the jar upside down. You'll find more air bubbles rushing to the bottom (now top) of the jar, from in the plants and from the honey as well. Place right side up, uncap and add more brandy, right to the lip of the jar.
Repeat this process until turning upside down produces almost no bubble at all. Leave jar right side up, tightly capped, in a dark cool place, shaking upside down several times a week, for at least a month. The leaves will get dark and soften and the honey will slowly dissolve. It may take more time. It may take more brandy.
When you're satisfied (or too impatient) take off the lid and taste. It should be sweet and delicious. If there's anything off to the look or smell, be suspicious and err on the side of caution- throw it out. You can decide to give it more time. As long as the plant material is fully submerged in alcohol, it will keep for a verrrry long time- I've waited 2 or 3 years in some forgotten cases.
When you're ready, strain through tightly woven cheesecloth and a strainer into jars. I then fill a 4oz dropper bottle and dose from there. 1 squirt in the mornings is my happy place.
Share with me- have you made an elixir? What herbs did you use? What herbs would you like to use?
Fun Fact: I'm an herbalist and a movement coach. Not a doctor, or a pharmacist, and not pretending to be one on TV.
This is a public space, so my writing reflects my experiences and I try to stay general enough so it might relate to you. This does not constitute medical advice, and I encourage you to discuss concerns with your doctor. Remember, however, that the final say in your wellness decisions are always yours- you have the power to choose, you are the boss of you.
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