For several years we have relied on this stuff to get us through every tickle and sniffle to come up. There are times when things sneak by and I have to break out the big guns, but normally, this recipe keeps us from actually getting sick. It’s more than a tincture and has a few more ingredients than a simple Elderberry tincture or syrup. I would like to write a huge long ad for how great it is but the migraine came today and this stuff didn’t help with that.
Elderberry, Blueberry, Bilberry Reishi Syrup
Start on the night of the new moon. Put 5 Tbsp of dried elderberries, and 3 Tbsp each of dried Bilberries and Blueberries, and 1/2 of a Reishi mushroom, dried, into a clean saucepan, cover with filtered water with about 1″ of water over the top of the berries. Bring to a simmer and let this bubble slowly until liquid is reduced by at least half. Pour all of this into a 1 quart jar. Fill the jar to the shoulder with brandy and cap. Shake. Let sit for at least two weeks, shaking occasionally. Once the full moon shows it’s pretty face, you are ready to decant, though you can allow this to sit for as long as you want but shake it once in a while to let it know you love it.
To decant, simply pour through a fine mesh strainer into a clean, non-reactive saucepan. Heat very gently until it’s warm and add 1 pint of local, raw honey. Remove from heat and stir or whisk until the honey is incorporated. Don’t let it get too hot or the enzymes in the honey will be killed by the heat. Bad plan. The honey is important.
Put this into a pretty bottle and whenever you feel a tickle or sniffle, take about a tablespoon–we use little ceremonial cups and fill them about 1/2 way–several times each day.
This also makes a great dessert cordial for preventative use.
If you want to use fresh or frozen berries, please do, but you will want to use about double the measure of them because they are larger and juicier. The juice will also cut the percentage of alcohol in the tincture, so you may want to use a bit less honey.