- Small branches from a sassafras tree
- Cut small branches from a sassafras tree in fall before the leaves start turning color.
- Wash the leaves. Hang the branches in a cool, shady place to dry slowly. Don’t dry the leaves in bright sunlight, which can cause fading.
- Remove the dried leaves from the stems, discarding the stalks.
- Crush the leaves by hand, then grind in a clean coffee grinder until a fine, green powder is formed. Sift the powder and store the filé powder refrigerated in a well-sealed jar.