#FireCider is an excellent way to get the community based free herbalism thing going. Keeping it simple with food/slash/medicine plants people are familiar. You can later add more controversial less understood plants after people get ok with it. Preaching to the choir is cool yet it's important to help mitigate suffering by using things people can relate. Then later go further. I go heavy on the onions, garlic, horseradish, ginger less so on cayenne. The whole meyers lemons add a different kind of tartness and the rind a bitter element. The honey here is more aesthetic, taste rather than a medicinal amount.
Fire cider recipe:
equal parts: fresh chopped: 1)garlic 2)horseradish root
3)onion 4)hot peppers 5)ginger 6)meyer lemons place in 1/2 gallon jar cover w apple cider vinegar, let sit for 14 days, drain, add 4oz honey, take 1oz every morning during winter. Keeping it simple here, herbs can help people along on their road. Fire cider is accessible, familiar and by going soft on the pepper you'll find you can gift it and people are open to using it.
You can add elderberry, rose hips, turmeric astragulus. This is a simple community based recipe. #FireCider is an example of an acetum, oxymel an excellent way to keep herbs for winter use. The heavy alcohol thing can be a turn off, especially with kids and families. Begin to use experiment, play around with vinegar honey with herbs at this time. As an example rather than an elderberry tincture, make a cooked syrup or use vinegar acetum to get the herbal stuff, the herbal constituents into people's bodies. No matter how fine or excellent an herbal remedy is, it's totally useless if people don't take it. Some people go too heavy on the cayenne, making fire cider too hot. The main thing is to get the food/slash/plant herbal medicines into bodies. Garlic onions have good properties, healing therapeutic properties. Ginger horseradish, are warming herbs, work together to help cough, loosen bronchial secretions, all important for damp cold stuck conditions.
In a vitalist approach, the without is within and the within is without, meaning that the winter itself, the winter that is happening outside, rain and snow, a cold damp condition, is not a pathological condition, just a condition, a season. Moving towards descriptive, what is, rather than prescriptive, what should be. Winter is cold, it's just what it is. The body at certain times gets cold and damp, stuck in a cold damp condition. I tend to be going into a place where i don't want to use terms like antiviral, antibiotic, anti-anything. Describe and note conditions, presentations, symptoms, what is actually happening rather than a medical diagnosis. Fire cider is a small miracle because it works, it's simple, familiar and available, people are willing to use it and once you strain it out you still can use everything remaining in the jar as a food condiment, add a little redmonds utah red salt and you have excellent tasty seasoning to add to soups, salad, omelettes. Food, life, herbs, community.
I am Using equal parts by chopped cut up volume, eyeballing it. Roughly a glass Pyrex 8oz measuring cup rounded full of each. Since this may go to a general public without a lot of experience with herbs, I go with a medium hot jalapeño rather than cayenne powder or something like a habernero. I go heavy on garlic, onions, horseradish, ginger, not so much peppers. The honey amount 4oz added to the strained liquid result of a 64oz jar is less than say a Rosemary Gladstar recipe. While having about the same ratio horseradish ginger onion, a lot more garlic, more jalapeño compared to Rosemary G.
I kind of view it as a prophylactic, within that continuum of food plant to medicine plant, closer to food plant, like an introduction to herbs although potent in its own right.
If some was coming down with a low grade fever, achy, no obvious chest involvement or overt congestion, dry unproductive cough in our current situation:i would probably go with a Sambucus dried leaf tincture, lobelia tincture or acetum, ginger/tumeric tincture tea, Elderberry flower tincture or tea, Red root tincture, Ligusticum Angelica combo tincture, Yerba mansa or elephant tree tincture, an Asteracea ally like echinacea, rudbeckia or balsam root, with Skullcap, Pedicularis, Anemone, or a strong Prunus bark not for cough but to encourage sleep rest, and fairly large amounts of those herbs, and since that's a lot of herbs, back off on the fire cider to avoid stomach upset. That's off the top of my head.