Making Broths and Stocks

We included a blend of herbs in the Autumn Share to steep into broths and stocks because now is the season to start eating warm, slow cooked foods. Food is always the first and best form of medicine but you can make broths and stocks that are even more beneficial to your immune system by adding culinary herbs, medicinal mushrooms and astragalus to the pot. Here are our recipes for a basic stock and basic broth:



 Vegetable stock is an absolute staple in my kitchen.  I cook most foods in vegetable stock that would otherwise be cooked in water, such as grains and beans, and any soups and stews.  It’s a simple and easy way to add nutrients and flavor.  I also like to enjoy a hot cup of seasoned stock on a cold day, especially if I’m feeling a little under the weather. I make stock in an ongoing rotation, saving scraps from veggies in the freezer, cooking stock, and then freezing the stock.  Alternatively, you can always get whole vegetables and use those to make stock if the veggie scrap method doesn’t work for you. This is a loose recipe based on what scraps I like to use to make stock.  You can adapt depending on what you have on hand, or what flavors you prefer:

  • leek tops
  • onion tips and tails (skins are also fine)
  • mushroom stems
  • celery tops and bases
  • cabbage cores
  • kale, collard, chard and parsley stems

Fill a large pot at least half way with scraps and then fill the rest of the pot with water.  Bring to a boil, then turn down to low and simmer for about an hour.  Turn off heat and leave on the stove until cool (I typically make this in the evening and then let it cool overnight and decant it in the morning).  Strain out veggies, let cool and store stock in refrigerator or freezer.


FINN'S CHICKEN STOCK RECIPE (adapted from The Art of Simple Foods)

Put a whole chicken in a large pot (you can often get stew birds at the farmer's market)and then pour in 1 1/2 gallons of water (or to cover.) Place over high heat, bring to a boil, then turn the heat to low. Skim the broth and then add:

  • 2 carrots, peeled
  • 1 or 2 onions peeled and halved
  • 1 head of garlic, cut in half
  • 2 celery stocks plus leaves
  • salt to taste
  • 1/2 tsp black peppercorns
  • thyme and bay to taste

Simmer the broth for about 4 to 5 hours. Strain (saving the meat for soup or other dishes.) Allow to cool and then refrigerate or freeze the broth. Freezing the broth in ice cube trays can make nice single servings to add to greens, etc.

Plant Profile- Lemon Balm

Lemon balm is an easy to grow herb in the mint family and this lovely scented creature is one of our favorite plants. The lemon balm in the Autmun share's tea blend was harvested from our gardens as well as Root Down Farm in Pescadero and is included because of its potent antiviral properties and its ability to ease colds, coughs and fevers. Lemon balm is also a powerful nervine that helps to calm anxiety, stress and tension and can ease stomach troubles, like gas and nausea,  that are often caused by nervous tension. Lemon balm is also a mood elevator and can act as a mild antidepressant (for a nutritive nervous system tonic, Finn likes lemon balm in combination with oats and nettles.) For cranky children or frustrated adults, a cup of lemon balm tea can help everyone to calm down. Herbalist Karyn Sander also uses small spirit doses of lemon balm tincture to support clients in healing from sexual trauma.

If you have any garden space we suggest you plant some lemon balm! This adaptable plant even grows well in pots and can tolerate shade and the more your harvest its fragrant tops, the more leaves it will produce. <3

Medicine Making Workshops

All proceeds from these workshops will be donated to the Black Lives Matter Ferguson Jail and Support Fund.

Salves and Skin Oil Medicine Making Workshop with Lauren

Learn how to make simple topical remedies for everyday use or first aid.  In this hands-on workshop we will cover salves, balms and herb infused skin oils.  You’ll bring home a medicine making guide and a salve.

Sat, Jan 24th, 1-3 pm in Bernal Heights, SF

Tea and Tincture Medicine Making Workshop with Finn

Learn how to make simple medicines for everyday use and acute care.  In this hands-on workshop we will cover infusions, decoctions, tinctures and other remedies for holistic support.  You’ll bring home a medicine making guide and a tincture of your choice.

Sun, Jan 25th from 1-3pm in South Berkeley

***Neither location is  wheelchair accessible. Participants will be asked to come fragrance free. Please feel free to contact us for additional info about accessibility:

Nourish and Magic Makers

We will be vending at two community fairs this season. Come by and say hello!


    Join us at a Queer Care event, brought to you by local queer herbalists, in the spirit of nurturing ourselves and our community in preparation for the whirlwinds of winter. There will be low-cost consultations, free workshops, hands-on herbal stations and handmade products by local queer herbalists.

    Sunday, November 23rd
    Oakland Makerspace - LOL
    1234 23rd Avenue, Oakland, California 94606


  • MAGIC MAKERS is an intentional space of celebration of a queer art & crafting community, centered on political and social awareness, a diversity of artists and vendors, and resistance to cultural appropriation in craft show trends.

    Returning after last year’s amazing and inspiring event, we are excited to announce that MAGIC MAKERS will return on Sunday, December 14, 2014 at Humanist Hall in Oakland.

    /// F E A T U R I N G ///
    visual art, crafts, massage, food, drink, queer haircuts, tarot, astrology, healing, books, zines, bowties, jewelry, smoking blends, skin care & body care products, teas, potions, postcards, calendars, ceramics, crepe paper flowers, plants, candles, clothing, accessories, posters, prints, acupuncture, magic, and more!
    For our full list of arts and crafts vendors, herbalists, healers, stylists, food and drink crafters, etc., please visit:

    /// A C C E S S ///
    MAGIC MAKERS is committed to accessibility. Please come FRAGRANCE FREE for the health and comfort of both our vendors and audience (check out East Bay Meditation Center's resource page for more info: ).
    The Humanist Hall is wheelchair accessible. We have a small number of parking spots for people with limited mobility; please email us at if you need access to these spaces.

Workshops on Herbs for Fall and Winter Cooking

Finn will be teaching this class at Alembique in Berkeley:

Healing Herbs for Fall & Winter Cooking
Thursday, October 2nd, 2014 | 7-9 PM

Discover how to use herbs in the kitchen to keep you and your family healthy throughout the cold and flu season. You will help make and taste a delicious broth, and create an herbal infusion to take home together with an illustrated hand-out on healing herbs and kitchen medicines.

Instructor: Finn Cunningham | $28/person if booked by Friday, September 25, 2014, $32 after.

Workshop on Herbs for Sleeping and Dreaming

Finn will be teaching this workshop at Alembique in Berkeley this Saturday:

Herbs for Sleeping & Dreaming, Saturday, September 20  3-5 PM

Adequate sleep is vital for our health and most of us don't get enough of it. Finn Cunningham guides us through key medicinal herbs that help with insomnia or enhance your dreams. Explore the characteristics of these calming plants and ways to incorporate them into your life for better sleep. You'll take home an illustrated handout, a healthy smidge of hand-blended organic tea and a mini dream pillow in an unbleached muslin bag to help you get back some lost sleep.
Instructor: Finn Cunningham | $25/person if purchased by Monday, September 15, 2014, $28 thereafter.   Purchase  

Workshops on Herbs for Stress, Anxiety and Depression

Discover the ways that medicinal plants can support your mental and emotional health. Attend one or both parts of this garden-based workshop on Sunday, August 17th. 

Located in South Berkeley (address given after registration.)

Accessibility info: Participants will be asked to come fragrance-free. The garden is wheelchair accessible however access to the bathroom is limited by a flight of three stairs. Please get in touch if more specific info is needed.

11am-1pm: Herbal Support for Stress, Anxiety and Depression

Learn about a variety of medicinal herbs that can support the nervous system, calm anxiety, and ease depression. Come meet the plants and discover how they can help you to feel more balanced. You’ll come away with a list of plants for both everyday use and acute care.

2-4pm: Medicine Making for Stress, Anxiety and Depression

Learn how to make simple medicines for everyday use and acute care.  In this hands-on workshop we will cover infusions, decoctions, tinctures and other remedies for holistic support.  You’ll bring home a medicine making guide and a tincture of your choice.

Informational workshop from 11-1pm $25 (register here)

Medicine making workshop from 2-4pm: $30 (register here)

Both workshops: $50 (register here)

If you would like to reserve a spot without using paypal feel free to contact Finn at wildoatsandnettles at gmail. Thanks!