Fruit tingle aromatherapy blend

During the frequent home inspections when our house was on the market, I employed the power of aromatherapy to create a subtle, non synthetic welcoming aroma to my home. Apparently if you are trying to sell your home you shouldn’t have aromas that are too complex, basically it can detract from the job at hand – namely looking at your home. So if the potential buyers brain is distracted by trying to work out the odour their attention becomes divided. The advice I found on the internet was to keep aromas simple. Citrus and vanilla are apparently good choices as they are easily recognisable scents, along with the well known fresh brewed coffee and freshly baked bread aromas.

So, I concocted a fizzy, citrus fruit tingle like aromatherapy blend that was kept subtle by placing only a few drops on my salt lamps. The heat of the salt lamp gave a very gentle and subtle release of the scent so it wasn’t too obvious. I have no idea if it helped at all but it became an enjoyable ritual like process for me!

Here’s the blend:

Fruit Tingle

 

Kerry x

 

 

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Solid perfumes

Recently I went for a lovely drive to The Honey Farm located in Chudleigh, Tasmania. Chudleigh lies in a little valley with the awesome Great Western Tiers as the backdrop. Chudleigh is also very close to Mole Creek Karst National Park – an area renowned for underground caves, underground rivers, caverns and glow worms! It is a breathtakingly beautiful, pristine part of the world.

The purpose of my trip was to pick up some beeswax for my solid perfumes. The beeswax has a beautiful rich, honey aroma. Here it is:

Tasmanian beeswax from Chudleigh

Tasmanian beeswax from Chudleigh

And here are the solid perfumes made from the beeswax with jojoba, essential oils & absolutes: Solar, Rose Tea & Forest.

SOLAR: is a radiant blend of juicy citrus, jasmine grandiflorum, bitter orange absolute and amber.

ROSE TEA: is a bohemian rose & tea, with a heart of rose centifolia and damascena delicately surrounded by tea notes of bergamot, rooibos red tea and frankincense, on a base of patchouli and oud.

FOREST: dappled rays of citrus dance amongst the fir and pine trees, before casting light on an earthy forest floor of vetiver and incense.

These have been a real delight to make. There seems to be something calming and meditative about the preparation of solid perfumes – I think it has to do with the grating and melting of the beeswax! After adjusting of ratios, these have turned out to be a lovely creamy consistency that melt right into the skin leaving an intimate veil of scent.

These will initially only be available at the Launceston niche market. I should then have them available online in the new year.

 

èrlithe will be at Niche & Co this year!

I’m very excited to announce that our application to attend this years niche market in Launceston,Tasmania was accepted! There were over 500 applicants with only 51 places available!

The extra great thing is that 20% of sales will be donated to St. Giles to support children with disability in Tasmania. Here’s the date to mark in your calendar for those in or visiting Launceston:

53292_stgiles_niche posters 2

 

I’m also hoping to have a few new items available for sale on the day which will eventually make their way to the website. These new items are solid perfumes and fragranced bath salts.

The solid perfume fragrances that I have settled upon are: jasmine, rose & red tea, fir and neroli. Jasmine is my “smell” of the month and the solid perfume has turned out to be insanely gorgeous. I just wish there was such a thing as ‘smell -o-net’ so you could smell what I mean!

Trialling solid perfumes

Trialling solid perfumes

Cooking with essential oils – Lavender Scones

The fragrant pharmacy

The fragrant pharmacy

It never really occurred to me that it was possible to cook with essential oils. I’m not sure why, given that I have had the book: ‘The Fragrant Pharmacy: A complete guide to aromatherapy & essential oils’ by Valerie Ann Worwood for sometime. It was published in 1990, so I guess I was a little wary of the chapter on cooking with essential oils and the subsequent recipes. In the back of my mind I thought it was probably published at a time when safety was not at the forefront of thinking and so I simply ignored that chapter. The potency of essential oils are frequently referred to in aromatherapy books and they are quick to point out safety considerations and what oils not to use with certain conditions etcetera, so cooking with essential oils just simply was a no go zone – I  never actually gave it any further thought, consideration or investigation at all. I had the general idea that it sounded unsafe, end of story.

It was my recent purchase of ‘Aroma: The magic of essential oils in food and fragrance’ by Mandy Aftel and Daniel Patterson that had me begin to explore the concept of cooking with essential oils. It was then that I realised that the food industry does sometimes use essential oils for flavouring. An example is the Australian pana chocolate company based in Victoria. Of course many artificial flavours are used in the food industry, however, when they advertise natural flavours, they are often referring to real plant extracts and oils. Here in Tasmania we have essential oils of tasmania that farm and produce a number of essential oils and plant extracts for the food, flavour and fragrance industries.

Aroma: The magic of essential oils in food & fragrance by Mandy Aftel and Daniel Patterson

Aroma: The magic of essential oils in food & fragrance by Mandy Aftel and Daniel Patterson

Essential oils that can be used in the kitchen can be categorised into 4 groups: citrus (eg, lemon, orange, lime, grapefruit), floral (eg, rose, lavender, jasmine, geranium, ylang ylang), herbs (eg, tarragon, mint, thyme, basil) and spices (eg, black pepper, nutmeg, coriander, cardamom, cinnamon).

With the growing interest and demand for essential oils has come the unscrupulous practice of adulterating essential oils. So it is imperative that if you do choose to cook with essential oils that you are sure that they are 100% pure and natural, not synthetic fragrance oils. I personally would not use any bottle of essential oil that you may buy from a bricks and mortar retail shop for ingesting. Mandy Aftel offers essential oils for cooking from her Chef’s Essences range. I have not purchased from doTerra before, however, they seem to be committed to ensuring all of their oils are 100% pure and market their oils specifically for cooking and therapeutic purposes. Within Australia, the company Cosmark Aromatics appear to be a supplier of essential oils approved for use in flavouring food.

Before cooking with essential oils, it is wise to consider some safety aspects such as:

1. Ensure your essential oil is 100% pure and natural and you have purchased from an approved supplier for your intended use.

2. If pregnant or breastfeeding – DO NOT use or ingest an essential oil at all.

3. Store essential oils out of reach of children.

4. If you are allergic to a particular food ingredient, DO NOT consume an essential oil derived from that ingredient.

5. Essential oils are potent. Only a drop or 2 is required to flavour an entire dish.

I still approach the concept of cooking with essential oils with great trepidation! So my first dabbling has been with lavender. The following recipe is for Lavender Scones from Bridestowe Lavender Estate. Their lavender oil is naturally low in camphor and when I asked I was told it was safe for flavouring food and beverages. You can purchase their culinary lavender here.

Lavender products from Bridestowe Lavender Estate, Tasmania

Lavender products from Bridestowe Lavender Estate, Tasmania

They freely provide the recipes to the food they serve in their cafe, online as well as onsite and you can purchase their pure lavender essential oil online as well.

LAVENDER SCONES 

3 1/2 cups self-raising flour

300mls cream

200mls lemonade

2 teaspoons culinary lavender

Sift flour, add culinary lavender and stir. Combine lemonade and cream. Create a well in the flour mix and pour wet ingredients into it. Mix and knead well together. Roll out on floured board. Cut into rounds and place on a tray lined with baking paper. Bake for 20 minutes at 200 degrees celcius. (Recipe courtesy Bridestowe Lavender Estate).

To the cream I also added 2 drops of lavender essential oil (lavandula angustifolia) – but this is optional!

P.S. Thank you to George Washington Inn for leaving the comment below. I mentioned using the culinary lavender from Bridestowe, which is of the lavandula angustifolia variety. As George Washington Inn rightly mentions, this is the only variety of lavender that can be safely consumed, as it is low in camphor compared to the other varieties of lavender. It is the low camphor that also makes this variety perfect for perfumery purposes. So, if you are considering using a lavender essential oil or even  lavender flowers in your cooking, make sure it is the lavandula angustifolia variety.

The lavender sprigs in the photo below are from my garden and for decoration only – I have no idea what variety of lavender it is!

Lavender Scones

Lavender Scones