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The Cottage May/Midsummer 2001 Issue


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Herb of the Month


A Regular Feature of The Cottage

Lavender(Lavendula officinale)
Planet: Mercury
Element: Air
Powers: Love, Protection, Sleep, Chastity, Longevity, Purification,
Happiness, Peace

A sunset; Actual size=240 pixels wide

Lavender is a traditional cottage garden plant.
Its gray-green spikes of foliage and purple flowers
provide color all year. Since the Middle Ages,
the dried flowers have been one of the main ingredients
of potpourri. Fresh sprigs are included in herbal bunches
known as tussie mussies, which have been used for hundreds
of years to mask unpleasant odors and ward off illness

Lavender prefers a sunny location and light, dry, well-drained
soil. It is an ideal plant for a large rock garden. To
plant in the traditional way, select a sunny, well drained
site that affords protection from winter winds. Unless youre
in a frost free climate, stick with lavenders and lavandins which
winter well unless they are abused with poor drainage or frost
heave. Lavenders can be started from seed but it is far
easier to buy plants or do cuttings.

The fragrant leaves andflowers can be used fresh in salads
and fruit dishes, or added to cooked sauces, candies and
baked goods. When dried they are used in jellies.Lavender is
grown primarily for the oil in its flowers, which is widely used
as a fragrance in perfumes and cosmetic products and to
flavor beverages and baked goods.

Flower water is a skin toner useful for speeding cell renewal
and is an antiseptic for acne. Flower tea treats anxiety,
headaches, flatulence, nausea, dizziness, and halitosis. The
essential oil is a highly valued perfume and healer. It is
antiseptic, mildly sedative, and painkilling. It is applied
to insect bites, and treats burns, sore throats and headaches.
Queen Elizabeth I is said to have consumed up to 10 cups of
lavender water a day to relieve migraines.
The oil is used for intestinal gas, migraine, and dizziness.
Being antiseptic, lavender is added to healing salves. A tea of
the leaf allays nausea and vomiting. Use two teaspoons per cup
of water and steep for twenty minutes. The dose is one-fourth
cup four times a day. Steep lavender blossoms in white wine and
strain to make a natural antidepressant beverage. Lavender and
rose petal vinagar is applied to the temples and brow to
ease headache. Lavender oil is added to footbaths, eases
toothaches and sprains, and is used as a rub for hysteria and palsy.

Lavender is strewn into bonfires at Midsummer as an offering
to the Gods and Goddesses. An ingredient of love spells, its
scent is said to attract men. Lavender in the home brings peace,
joy and healing. The essential oil is included in health; love;
peace; and conscious mind-oriented formulas. Use to attract love;
to produce sleep by anointing your forehead and pillow; to purify
by adding to baths and to promote chastity and peace. Attracts
elves, burn for purification, peace. Burn at Litha as an offering.
Love; Psychic Awareness; Happiness; Creative Work; Money and
Business; Anointing; Exorcism; Harmony; Peace; Healing. The odor
of lavender is conducive to long life and so should be smelled
as often as possible.

Lavender Cookies

2 eggs
1/2 cup margarine
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon lavender leaves
1 1/2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
confectioner's sugar

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Put eggs, margarine, sugar and lavender into
blender and run on low until well mixed. Sift flour, baking powder and salt
into a mixing bowl. Add other ingredients and stir until well blended. Drop
dough a teaspoon at a time onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake until lightly
browned. Blend enough rosewater into the confectioners sugar to make a smooth
frosting. Ice the cookies and let them set until frosting is firm.

Lavender Honey

Provided by JaCyn Lavender Farm


8oz Light Honey (such as clover honey)
4 tablespoons of Dried Lavender buds

Heat honey in double boiler till fully heated
add lavender and stir
Continue over heat for 30 minutes
Remove from heat and allow to partially cool
Place in sun for 3 hours (optional)
Strain out lavender
Put honey in jar
Different varieties of lavender will cause variations in flavor. Varying the
amount of lavender will change the intensity of flavor. Heating for too long
can release a more acrid oil into the honey in some lavender varieties.

Lavender Custard

Provided by JaCyn Lavender Farm


1.5 cups milk (you can use fat-free)
1 Tablespoon lavender leaves
3 Tablespoons Sugar
2 Teaspoons Corn Starch
2 Eggs, beaten

In a double boiler bring milk and lavender leaves to boil
Cover and let stand for 15-20 minutes.
Strain and set aside
Stir together sugar and corn starch in a medium saucepan
Slowly add strained milk.
Keep stirring and cook until bubbly and thickening
Away from pan add 1/2 cup of hot mixture to eggs, stir and add to saucepan
Cook for another 3 minutes.
Can be served hot or cold. If serving cold chill quickly by placing pan in
ice water, stir while cooling then refrigerate

Lavender Lemonade
1 pint water
1 oz lavender flowers (wt.)
8 oz sugar (wt.)
Juice of 4 lemons

Pour boiling water over the lavender flowers and allow to infuse for about
20 minutes. Then add sugar and lemon juice, and chill. Store in the
'fridge.To make up, mix about 1 part of the syrup to 4 parts water, serve
with ice.

Lavender Jelly
Provided by Cedarbrook Herb Farm


2 cups lavender infusion
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
4 cups sugar
1 3oz envelope of liquid pectin
Lavender food coloring (optional)

Combine infusion, lemon juice and sugar
Bring to full boil stirring constantly
add pectin
boil 1 minute stirring constantly
Remove from heat and add food coloring
Pour into jars and seal
Jelly can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a month. To store longer
process jars in a water bath for 5 minutes after sealing with canning lids.

Lavender Biscuits
5 oz butter (wt.)
4 oz fine sugar (wt.)
1 egg
6 oz self raising flour (wt.)
1 tablespoon lavender flowers

Cream the butter and sugar, mix in the beaten egg, then mix in the flowers
and flour. Place small heaps on a greased baking tray and bake at 350F/170C
for about 15-20 minutes.

Gondolas in Venice; Actual size=240 pixels wide

Lavender Sponge Cake
5 oz self raising flour (wt.)
3 oz butter (wt.)
3 oz lavender sugar (wt.)
1/4 cup milk
2 beaten eggs

Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy, then beat in the eggs one at a
time. Fold in the flour. Pour the mixture into two 7" sponge tins. Bake at
17C/325F for about 10 - 15 minutes until just browned. Sandwich together
with raspberry jelly, or else with lavender buttercream made by creaming 3
oz butter with 3 oz lavender sugar and a few drops of lemon juice.

Lavender Ice Cream
14 oz Milk
3 oz Lavender leaves and flowers
2 oz Crystallized ginger, chopped
1 c Sugar
3 Egg yolks
2 c Heavy whipping cream, cold
Lavender flowers for garnish

In a saucepan, slowly heat milk to approximately 200 F. Remove from fire and add lavender. Allow to steep for 15 minutes. Strain milk through cheesecloth while warm. Add crystallized ginger and sugar to milk. Place egg yolks into a small bowl; then put half the mixture from saucepan into the bowl to blend. Stir mixture with a spoon and pour back into the saucepan. Place over low heat and cook until mixture is approximately 200 F. Add 2 cups cold heavy whipping cream and place into refrigerator until well chilled. Process in any ice cream machine. During the last few minutes of ice cream processing, sprinkle in individual lavender flowers stripped from lower heads.

Makes 1 quart.

Lavendar Bubble Bath
by Belinda Mooney
1 bunch Lavender
1 large bottle clear organic shampoo
5 drops oil of Lavender
Clean wide-neck jar with screw top
Place Lavender head down in the jar. Cut down to fit. Add shampoo and
Lavender oil. Close and place in sunny window (sorry if you are not in a
place the sun reaches this time of year! I am lucky enough to be in
California.) for 2-3 weeks and shake occasionally. Strain and re-bottle. Use
1 tbsp in a bath.

Lavender Mineral Bath

1/2 cup solar dried sea salts
1/4 cup epsom salts
1/4 cup dead sea mineral salts
40 drops lavender EO

Mix all ingredients well (adding EO last) store in a glass jar or tin
and use 1/4 cup per bath!

Lovely Lavender Oat Mask

1/2 c. ground whole oatmeal
6 drops lavender essential oil

Mix all well. I recommend that you add the essential oil before you
grind the oats in a blender or food processor. You can add up to 12
drops per mix if you like a stronger fragrance mask. Lavender is
great for the skin and one of the most 'safe' of the essential oils
to use directly on the skin.

This recipe is great because you can cater to your skin type. For
each mask you will need 2 tablespoons of your mix.
Normal skin type: add enough whole milk to make a thick paste
Oily skin type: add enough water to make a thick paste
Dry skin type: Add whole fresh cream to make a thick paste.

Smooth mask over the whole face avoiding the eye area. Leave on for
20 minutes then rinse. Rinsing is easiest when you use a warm cloth
to soak and soften the mask before gently removing the mask.

Fresh and clean was never so natural and so fun!!!

Gondolas in Venice; Actual size=240 pixels wide

A wish divination
Place lavendar under your pillow, while thinking of your wish, before bed.
If you dream of anything relating to your wish, it will come true. If you do
not dream of anything relating to your wish, it will not manifest.

Lavender Wands
19 fresh lavender stalks, cut as long as possible
4 feet of ribbon
Strip leaves from lavender stalks. Tie stalks together just below heads.
Holding flower heads in your fist, bend stems down from the point where they
are tied back over flower heads. Secure stalks temporarily with a rubber
band. Stalks should be evenly spaced and form a little cage around flowers.
With ribbon at top of cage, drop one end of ribbon through cage and let it
hang. Take the other end of ribbon and, starting at the top of cage, weave
ribbon in and out through stalks until flowers are completely enclosed.
Remove rubber band. Wrap ribbon around stems several times and then, using
both ends of ribbon, tie a knot and a bow. Trim ends of the ribbon and
stalks to even lengths.

White Goddess Milk Bath
1 c cornstarch
2 c dried milk powder
1/8 tsp fragrance oil
Combine dry ingredients
in food processor and blend.
Add oil and blend again.
Add 1/2 cup to bath water

Flowery Love Bath
3 Tbs. Lavender
3 Tbs. Palmarosa
1 Drop Rose
Bathe in this to attract love and to expand your ability
to give and receive love