Updated: Jun 8, 2021
springtime is late in the rockies but wow when it shows up. everything everywhere is blooming and it’s quite beautiful and full of life. i absolutely am in love with the smell of plum blossoms. on a recent romp through an old orchard, i remembered the plum trees and they were alive with bugs and bees. the trees were abuzz. i filled my basket within minutes, taking in the sun and our valley town below.
i have recently decided to take a long break from alcohol, so oxymels mixed with sparkling water are practically an every night treat. in a fancy wine glass of course. an oxymel is just a simple vinegar and honey herbal remedy. you don’t have to limit yourself to apple cider vinegar and honey though, i have made a few with maple syrup. for this recipe, i felt like honey was a good call, like all things herbalism i think you should experiment with what you have available. this recipe would also be divine with cherry or crab apple blossoms.
i made this batch in a quart jar, starting off with the jar about 3/4th full of plum blossoms. then i added 2 tablespoons fresh spearmint (1 tablespoon dried) 1 tablespoon dried lemon peel (2 tablespoons fresh) 6 cardamom pods popped in half. i use the side of a knife to pop them open as you would do with garlic.
now this part is really about personal preference, how sweet do you want this remedy to be. typically an oxymel is one part honey to three parts vinegar however, i have seen recipes call for half and half. i don’t like my beverages super sweet, so i go for the 1:3 or even a 1:4 ratio. pour the honey in first, then add the vinegar. i used apple cider vinegar. then i stirred it up a bit using a chopstick. the honey will dissipate into the vinegar quickly. place a wax paper in between the jar and lid. shake well.
i typically will let an oxymel infuse for a month or two, i have also had them infuse for several months. it will work its way into your life, you will get the rhythm down. making and straining remedies will just become a way of life. this remedy, however, will only infuse for two weeks, because i am having company and i plan on us drinking this. oxymels are also fabulous in salad dressing, meat marinades, soups, stews, beans, and rice. it’s endless just start adding it to whatever you feel inclined to. next up, i will discuss straining and bottling. straining is pretty straightforward, i use cheesecloth and a strainer over a large glass measuring cup.
this is a dandelion root, leaf, and flower oxymel i made last month. pour the contents through a cheesecloth, squeeze, and compost.
i like to recycle old wine or fancy bottles for my herbal concoctions. using a funnel pour into bottles and label.
cheers witches ✨
these oxymels mixed with sparkling water are so good. a perfect way to unwind and settle into the evening. this time of year can be crazy, be sure to take some time for yourself and just be. thanks for being here, and if you make a blossom oxymel i want to hear about it. please share with a friend or on your social media. have a wonderful time soaking up these last spring days before we are swept away by summer.