Every month we have the honor to talk to an alumni of our school. We get to share their journey with you and give you some insight into the folks that come through our school. Read more Herbal Journeys here.
This month we caught up with Alexandra Hudson, so shares her story of growing up in a family of modern medicine practitioners. She felt like something was missing. Then she found herbal medicine. And with it came a fire, and an ancetral inheritance, worth rekindling!
Here’s her story.
The Herbal Journey of Alexandra Hudson
Alexandra grew up in a family of western medicine practitioners, and the language of this system formed her way of thinking about the world. When she came upon herbal medicine in her early 20s, she realized that her medicine chest was missing a huge resource; this realization was deeply emotional, as she saw that the absence of plant medicine in her life was akin to the loss of a huge ancestral inheritance.
Up to this point, her primary way of relating with plants was through her passion for cooking, and the promise of herbal medicine as the journey under the veil and into a world of magic and interconnectivity riveted her. So, guided by her yearnings for depth and profundity, she set forth to rekindle the fire for herself and her family.
Alexandra’s Time with the Berkeley Herbal Center
A few years after beginning her courtship with the plants, Alexandra found Berkeley Herbal Center. She saw that the center provided an approach to herbalism that would meet her where she was at and guide her deep into the rabbit hole of the world of plant medicine. Shortly after finding their long-term program, she applied and began her studies.
The deeper she went in her inquiry of plant medicine and the healing path, the more she felt ~ the more sensitive to herself and others she became. Her teachers and her plants helped her navigate this opening process as gracefully as possible, and in response, Alexandra became ever more devoted to the plants and to connecting people with their own plant medicines.
A cornerstone of Alexandra’s devotional practice is to incorporate her favorite herbs – both domestically cultivated and wild-harvested – into her everyday life through food and cooking. Alexandra combines her medicine making skills honed at Berkeley Herbal Center with her love of food-craft to create recipes that are delicious, delightful, and rich with herbal medicine. She shares these recipes and culinary techniques through online and in-person classes and writing with local news outlets and on her social media platforms.
Where is She Now?
Alexandra’s journey has taken her down to Santa Cruz where she and her partner are homesteading out in the redwood forest. One of her favorite seasonal joys is the emergence of the wild greens in the mid-wintertime; the young greens are so vibrantly energizing that she tries to incorporate them into as much of her food as possible. One of Alexandra’s favorite recipes is for a probiotic wild Salsa Verde, which she and her family drizzle over basically everything savory from midwinter-late spring.
Probiotic Wild Salsa Verde Recipe from Alexandra Hudson
In a high speed blender, combine till soft & creamy and then season to perfection:
- 3oz leaves of spicy spring greens (watercress, nasturtium, spring onions [green parts])
- 6oz olive oil
- 2oz cup sauerkraut juice
- 2oz lemon juice
- 1T anchovies
- 4t nasturtium capers or non pareils capers
- 1t chili flakes
- 2 cloves garlic
- A shake or two salt
Store in the fridge and pour on everything savory.
How to Find More Recipes and Get in Touch
For more recipes, tune into Alexandra’s facebook page or check her website The Alchemistress to enroll in one of her upcoming Wild Plant ID or Wild Plant Cooking classes.