Sunday, November 7, 2010


Sorry I haven't posted in a while.  Fall is my busiest time of the year.  Since I make most of my holiday gifts I need to get started early.  I have also been making new products for my Etsy Shop. After wild crafting herbs and flowers in the fall they are now solar infusing nicely on my windowsills. Besides the multi-herb oil pictured in the previous post, I have also infused the vanilla oil pictured. 

The beautiful calendula was picked yesterday in the garden.  It's unusual for it to still be blooming in November so I am really thankful.  Calendula is an amazing herb.  It is especially good for babies because of it is so gentle and healing.  Some of the other infusions I am making are comfrey, arnica, St. John's Wort, and elderflower.  For holiday gifts I am infusing  rosemary, thyme, fennel, and tarragon in organic olive oil.  

I like the slower solar infused method, only using dried herbs and add Vit E oil to prevent rancidity and to increase shelf life. If stored away from heat and light, your oil should last a year or two if not longer.This is how I do it:
 Dry the herbs to remove all water.  This can be done with a food dehydrator or just by leaving in the sun.  After the flowers and herbs are dry, you can add them to the olive oil.  Whole sprigs of thyme, rosemary, dried peppers, etc. can decorate the inside of the bottle this way. 
The oil will pick up the flavor fairly quickly, in the first few weeks, and then slowly intensify. It is fine to leave the herbs in for a long time; eventually all the flavor leaves the herbs and the oil flavor stabilizes. I like to infuse the herbs in the decorative beer bottles pictured when giving as gifts. For the herbal infused olive oils I like to attach a recipe to the bottle.  For the infused massage oils like vanilla, comfrey, calendula, St. John's wort, arnica I sometimes like to essential oils known for healing or relaxation.  

Happy Holidays and don't forget to visit my Etsy Store for my big Black Friday Sale.