Herbal Holiday Guide
The LB Herbal Holiday Guide is a list of supportive strategies to enhance our well being throughout the holiday season and winter solstice. Gathering with friends and loved ones, enhancing our moods and interior environments, and the specific herbs for seasonal wellness.
Herbs not regularly thought about that can elevate the senses in cooking, scents, gifts and decor to bring about that holiday cheer!
Bay Leaf (Laurus nobilis) Classic scent that is perfect for miniature wreaths and to flavor a stock.
Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) - the flowers for last minute infused sea salts, salted caramels and use the usually forgotten foliage for potpourri sachets for last minute guests.
Myrtle (Myrtus communis) for seasoning game dishes and for added fragrance and infused scent oils.
Lemon Thyme (Thymus citriodorus) to add a little citrusy zest to stuffings and poultry rubs.
Tarragon (Artemisia dracunculus) infused into champagne vinegar for leftover turkey salads or baked into breads. Anise flavor.
Chervil (Anthriscus cerefolium) to add on top of creamy soups
Calendula (Calendula officinalis) infused with orange vodka for a wonderful bitter base to cocktails.
Magnolia (Magnolia grandiflorum) Leaves for gift tags and wreaths. Leaves are edible being closely related to Bay Leaf.
Pine (Pinus spp.) bundles for place settings
Hibiscus (Hibiscus sabdariffa) flowers for hibiscus chutney and cheater fire cider gifting!
2. Winter Aromatherapy
Keep it light. Keep it bright.
A Freshly Cut Tree Brings about healing, better air circulation and respiratory relief. Keep the dressing natural and minimal to keep down on overstimulation and to better enjoy the natural benefits of the tree. Bless the tree and leave it gifts of Frankincense and Myrrh resins to thank it for its beauty and sacrifice. Be mindful to raise the gifts up if you have curious animals.
Be well with the essential oil blend of Frankincense (12 drops) (Boswellia carterii) Clove Bud (3 drops) (Eugenia caryophyllata) and Sweet Orange (12 drops) (Citrus sinensis) in your diffuser or atomizer for immunity assistance and warmth. Don’t have a diffuser directly near animals or small children.
Burn a Bayberry Candle with someone you love and have mulling spices infusing in the slow cooker. Our perfect mulling spice aromatherapy blend would include juniper berries, cinnamon sticks, rosehops, apples, cardamom, cloves, fennel, star anise and pinon pine and loblolly pine resins.
3. Herbal Holiday Activities for you and the kids!
4. Hot Chocolate with herbal liqueor Chartreuse or kid friendly with Herbal Handmade Marshmallows using the actual herb Marshmallow Althaea officinalis
Chartreuse is a classic recipe (synergy) supposedly out of France monastery that only one or two people in the world know the exact recipe for. It’s 55% alch content and 110 proof so you don’t need a lot!
2 cups of milk (Note: Our favorite coffee roaster prepares his hot chocolate with only water so the flavor of the dark chocolate really comes through. You can try all water or 50/50 milk and water if you want a really deep chocolate taste. But this only works with gourmet hot chocolate powder, not the Nestle’s we grew up with.)
2 TBSP chocolate powder — to taste. Good hot chocolate powder makes a big difference to the taste.
2 tsp green Chartreuse liqueur
Sugar to taste (Some hot chocolate powders are already pre-sweetened, so check this)
In a small pot, put the Chartreuse and sugar and the stir.
2. Add the milk (or water or even a 50/50 milk – water combination).
3. Add chocolate powder and stir until dissolved. Don’t let it boil. Simply dissolve the chocolate.