Today, after a month of hiding it in a cupboard and shaking it daily, I finally opened the fire cider I started making on 17 January. Which is a teeny bit of a lie, as I also had to open it about 10 days ago to replace the grease proof paper covering the top as it had gone too soggy and the vinegar was leaching out every time I hefted it. Anyhow…
…Opening it wasn’t the end of the process, I still had things to do. Breathing in the strong smell of sweet and sour rosemary, I strained the liquid through a sieve (I was supposed to use cheesecloth but didn’t have any) and then mashed the remnants down with a wooden spoon to get out all of the juice. By now ginger was the dominant smell, followed by vinegar, and then chilli. I took a big sniff, and by crikey it cleared the sinuses. The pulp had a surprisingly not unpleasant hot, fruity, tangy taste. Before I added the final ingredient, honey, I had a wee nip of the liquor – very garlicky, and very warm going down, tart, agreeable in a lemon sucking masochistic kind of way. I only had thickset honey which made stirring it in quite difficult and I didn’t really succeed. When the taste wasn’t eyewatering (about 2tbls of honey), the taste of rosemary really came out. I finished by decanting it into a jam jar. According to the recipe, I’m supposed to take a tablespoon every morning and triple the dose when the sniffles come. I can also use it as a vinaigrette. I think I’m more likely to use it with food, as I wouldn’t wish the smell of intense raw garlic on my breath on anyone. But otherwise, yum!
Renaissance Astrological Magic Update Monday (Moon Day): Woke up, stuffed small squares of white fun fur down bra, wore extra silver necklace and polished up old silver ring, went to work, saw some calla lilies (another correspondence), ate plain white yoghurt covered with nutmeg (grated with intent), tied hair back with white band, took off ring and put on necklace as kept fidgeting with it. Got a headache. Sign of newly attracted psychic powers…?
Carr-Gomm, P. and Heygate, R. (2014) The Book of English Magic, London, Hodder