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RECIPE: Lavender and Honey Marshmallows

Lavender and Honey Marshmallows via abeautifulmess.com

1/3 cup powdered sugar
1/3 cup corn starch
1 cup water
1 teaspoon lavender buds
3 packets of gelatin (each packet contains 1/4 ounce)
1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup light corn syrup
1/4 cup honey
1/4 teaspoon salt

Directions:

First steep the lavender buds in 1 cup hot water for 3-5 minutes. Taste and see if the lavender flavor is strong enough for you, if not steep for longer. Strain with a fine mesh strainer. In the bowl of a mixer (with the whisk attachment on) combine the 1/2 cup of the lavender water with the gelatin packets. Allow this to set for 10 minutes.

In the meantime, in a pot combine the sugar, corn syrup, honey, salt and the remaining 1/2 cup lavender water. Cook over high heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Heat until the mixture reaches 240°F (you will need a candy thermometer). Turn your mixer (with the gelatin in it) on low and CAREFULLY pour the hot sugar mixture into the mixer as it runs. I always use my splash guard during this step, you don’t want to get hot sugar on you! Once you’ve added all the sugar mixture turn your mixer on high and beat until white and fluffy (7-10 minutes).

While that runs whisk together the powdered sugar and corn starch. Spray a baking pan (rectangular or square depending on how fluffy you want your finished marshmallows to be) with non stick cooking spray. Sprinkle on the 3/4 of the powdered sugar mixture. Once the marshmallow batter is ready pour into the prepared pan and dust the surface with the remaining 1/4 of the powder sugar mixture. Allow to set overnight.

The next day simply remove your marshmallows from the pan and use a pizza cutter (or cookie cutters if you want to do shapes) to cut up your marshmallows. Serve in hot chocolate or try making fancy s’mores.

View original post on abeautifulmess.com

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RECIPE: Whiskey Lemonade with Honey

[recipe via foodiecrush]

A refreshing summer cocktail with a touch of sweet thanks to a twist on the traditional simple syrup: made with honey instead of sugar and your choice of steeped herbs.

Whiskey-Lemonade-FoodieCrush

Ingredients

1/2 cup raw honey
1/2 cup water
1-2 stems of your favorite herb (basil, rosemary, lavendar or mint) with a few leaves reserved for garnish
1/4 cup lemonade
1 shot good whiskey
1/4 cup soda
fresh lemon slices to garnish

Instructions

In a small saucepan, bring water and honey to a boil. Reduce heat, add an herbal sprig and simmer for 15 minutes or until reduced by half. Let cool.
Fill a short glass with ice and add one shot of whiskey. Add lemonade, soda and 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of honey simple syrup or to taste. Add reserved herb and lemon garnish and serve.

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Lavender & Honey Cupcakes


Ingredients: 

1 cup (2 sticks) sweet butter, softened
1 cup superfine sugar
2 cups self-rising flour
4 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup cream cheese, softened (for frosting)
1.5 cups confectioner’s sugar, sifted (for frosting)
1/3 cup honey (for frosting)
Blue food coloring (for frosting)
2 tbsp dried lavender flowers (for frosting) 


Directions:

Preheat the oven to 400° F (200° C). Place 18 paper baking cups in muffin pans. Combine all the cupcake ingredients in a medium bowl and beat with an electric beater until smooth and pale, about 2 to 3 minutes. Spoon the batter into the cups. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove pans from the oven and cool for 5 minutes. Then remove the cupcakes and cool on a rack.

For the frosting, beat the cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar in a medium bowl with an electric mixer, until light and creamy. Beat in the honey and a few drops of the food coloring. Stir in half the lavender flowers.

Spread the frosting onto cupcakes and sprinkle with the reserved lavender flowers.
 

[iVillage.com]

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DIY HERBAL SALVES

Supplies you’ll need:
Dried herbs or fragrant flowers
About 2 cups (473 mL) olive oil or other carrier oil, such as calendula oil or almond oil
About 1 cup (236.5 mL) BEESWAX (you can use a small votive beeswax candle if you can’t find pure beeswax)
Essential oil (optional)
Clean glass jars with tight-fitting lids, for infusing oil
Cheesecloth or a jelly bag
Liquid ingredient measuring cup
Saucepan
Grater
Plate
Tablespoon
Spoon
Saucer
Small clean tins or jars with lids
Kraft paper adhesive labels and printed Japanese washi tape

Yields about 2 cups (473 mL) of salve

http://www.etsy.com/blog/en/files/2011/12/salves.jpg

Directions:

Infuse Oil
Note: When you’re infusing the oils, there is no strict measurement or ratio of herbs to oil — just make sure to use enough oil to generously cover the herbs, since the herbs will absorb some of the oil.

1. Place the dried herbs or flowers in a clean jar and cover with olive or other carrier oil, filling to within 1? (2.5 cm) of the top of the jar.

2. Seal the jar tightly and place in a sunny window. Shake every day or so for two weeks to disperse the herbs throughout the oil.

3. Place a double layer of cheesecloth or a jelly bag over the measuring cup. Pour the contents of the jar over the cheesecloth or jelly bag to strain out the herbs. Let drain.

4. When the oil stops dripping, wring the herbs out with your hands to extract all of the infused oil. Discard spent herbs. Note how much infused oil you have in the measuring cup.

Create Salve
1. Pour the infused oil into a small saucepan. Grate the beeswax onto a plate. For every 1/4 cup (59 mL) of infused oil in the pan, add 2 tablespoons of grated beeswax to the pan and stir until dissolved. If you’re using essential oil, add a couple drops for every 2 tablespoons (29.5 mL) of infused oil, or more if you prefer a stronger scent.

2. Warm the ingredients gently over low heat. Meanwhile, place a saucer in the freezer.

3. When the wax is dissolved, remove the pan from the heat and place a spoonful of the salve mixture onto the cold saucer. Place the saucer back in the freezer.

4. After about a minute, check the consistency of the salve by removing the saucer from the freezer and testing it with your finger. If it’s very hard, add more infused oil. If it’s too soft, add more grated beeswax. Aim for a consistency that will work well as a salve (I prefer mine on the creamy side so I can use it as a heavy-duty gardening balm).

5. When the salve reaches the desired consistency, pour it into clean tins or jars.

6. Place the tins or jars on a level surface to cool and set. When the salve has cooled completely, place lids on the tins or jars.

Add Labels
1. Add decorative labels to the tins or jars to identify the blends. I printed the blend names on adhesive kraft labels and cut the labels to fit the tops of the tins. I also added a piece of washi tape along one side.

2. Store the salve in a cool, dark place.

[click here to view the original post on etsy.com]

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DIY: Moisturizer

Ingredients: 1/2 cup olive oil, 2 tablespoons of organic beeswax, 1 cup of tepid water
(Optional: Essential of your choice for scent, about 10 drop)

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The Bee’s Knees
Makes 1 drink

•3/4 ounce organic lemon juice
•3/4 ounce honey syrup
•2 ounces. Martin Miller’s Westbourne Strength or other overproof London-style gin

Instructions: Place ingredients in a cocktail shaker. Add large ice cubes and shake for 10 to 15 seconds. Strain into a cocktail glass.

Note: To make the honey syrup, stir together equal amounts honey and hot water. Chill. The syrup will keep refrigerated for several weeks.

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HONEY BAKLAVA BATONS

These simple cookies, an interpretation of the Middle Eastern pastry of baked phyllo layered with ground nuts and soaked with honey syrup, go nicely with ice cream.

INGREDIENTS:
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1/4 cup honey
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
4 phyllo sheets (18 inches by 13 inches each)
2/3 cup pistachios, walnuts or a combination of the two, finely chopped (about 8 tablespoons total)

DIRECTIONS: 
Melt the butter with the honey in a small saucepan over medium heat, then remove from the heat and stir in the cinnamon and allspice. Reserve 2 tablespoons for brushing the formed batons. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone liner. Lay one sheet of phyllo (cover the remaining stack with dampened paper toweling to keep the sheets from drying out) on the counter, with one of its long edges running parallel with the edge of the counter. Use a pastry brush to paint the sheet with the butter mixture. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of nuts evenly over the sheet. Carefully grip the edge closest to you and fold it one-fourth of the way, away from you. Fold the folded quarter in half and then in half again. This will create a kind of pastry baton that you can then easily roll all the way to the end of the sheet, until you have created 1 long baton. Cut the baton into five 5 1/2-inch lengths. Transfer the batons to the lined baking sheet, with the seams on the bottom. Repeat the process with the three remaining phyllo sheets. Before baking, brush the tops of the batons with the reserved butter mixture. Bake for 15 to 17 minutes until golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool before serving.

Makes 20 batons

Click here to read the recipe on WashingtonPost.com

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