Now that October is here, it is time for colds and influenza to find their way into our bodies. I have heard amazing things about elderberries anti-cold/flu properties, so I decided to try making an elixir for this autumn.
Elder Mother Immune Elixir (recipe adapted from bearmedicineherbals.com)
- 500ml (pint) sized mason jar (or any glass jar that seals well
- Fresh elderberries (I used frozen ones from Quebec)
- About a pint of high quality brandy (the better the brandy, the better the taste)
- Honey, to taste (approx. 1/3 pint or less)
- Stirring spoon
Fill jar to the top with elderberries. Pour honey in slowly, stirring to get good coverage over the berries. Fill jar with brandy, stirring as you go to release air bubbles. Cover the jar with a tight fitting lid and shake (to further mix the ingredients). Let macerate in a dark, cool place for four to six weeks. Strain, reserving liquid. Store in a dry, dark and cool place.
How to use the elixir:
1/4 - 1/2 dropperful of elixir every two to three hours at the first sign of illness. It is important to take the elixir frequently, or else it will not be effective. Use the same dosage when actively ill. For a preventative dose, 1/3 dropperful every four hours or so should work fine.
Rest well and keep hydrated. Extra sleep will help the elixir work as well. You can add spices (cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, orange peel) for extra “zing”, or you can add licorice root, peony root or mullein if you often suffer from respiratory illness.