Recipes and DIY

  • DIY: Focus Aromatherapy Mist

DIY: Focus Aromatherapy Mist

As a self-identified busybody, I need to recharge each day through special moments of solitude. Sipping herbal infusions, taking walks outside, and enjoying a fresh spritz of plant scents can help stimulate focus when I feel myself fading. Aromatherapy is a wonderful practice that can be used to gently alter your current state. Like the pleasant hum of a bell, scent can bring you back to the present moment and remind you of your intention. This awesome blend of hydrosol and essential oil keeps me levelheaded and inspired when I need it most. Bay Laurel has long been associated with scholarly pursuits, and offers a sweet, rich, invigorating aroma. When combined with rosemary for memory, clary sage for calm, and just a bit of uplifting citrus, this mist becomes a warm, floral, sweet, and delicately musky blend that's sure to keep you in positive spirits, especially when the task at hand seems like a mountain to conquer. Great for endurance focus, I keep it next to my desk for those post-work […]

  • DIY: Cacao & Vanilla Body Polish

DIY: Cacao & Vanilla Body Polish

Adoration for cacao can be traced back to ancient cultures in Mesoamerica. Bitter beverages made from the crushed seeds of this voluptuous fruit were enjoyed with a belief that these pods had magical properties. Mildly stimulating with a pronounced twinkle of euphoria, cacao was reserved for sacred rituals and royalty. With our obsession over herbal baths and Valentine's Day just a few weeks away, now is the perfect time to handcraft this decadent chocolate-infused body polish! This scrub recipe is a favorite from our own Irene Wolansky that smells scrumptious and beautifully exfoliates the skin, making it soft and smooth. It will leave a faint perfume of chocolate and vanilla that's sweet, earthy, and wonderfully provocative…      Cacao & Vanilla Body Polish Recipe Ingredients ¾ cup organic granulated or brown sugar, or fine sea salt ¼ cup plus 2 Tbsp organic apricot kernel, organic sweet almond, organic sunflower oil or other carrier 1 Tbsp organic + fair trade cacao powder 1 Tbsp organic vegetable glycerine or […]

  • How To Make Gluten-Free Seed Crackers

Easy Recipe: Grain-Free Seed Crackers

Crackers are the perfect salty canvas for spreads, dips, nut butters, and cheeses. It's so easy to snack away on these savory treats with their satisfying crispy crunch, but the store-bought variety are usually grain-based and contain weird preservatives, GMOs, emulsifiers, starches, gross hydrogenated oils, and loads of sugar. As many of us transition our diets to more whole foods and less processed junk, we also examine the ethics and health concerns of consuming certain ingredients. This challenges us to find alternatives to our favorite comfort munchies that are still crave-worthy, easy to prepare, and perhaps even good for us…   That's what makes this recipe such a crowd-pleaser!              For all of the gluten-free, paleo, vegetarian, vegan, or otherwise health-conscious folks in your life, these seed crackers will be a hit. For the flavor obsessed foodies who eat anything as long as it's tasty, these will do the trick too. I […]

  • The Healing Art of Bathing

The Healing Art of Bathing

Whether submerged in a forest-nestled hot spring, floating on the surface of a high mountain lake, or luxuriating in the warm lapping ocean, water is an essential element for physical and emotional wellbeing. Taking time to bathe in the ancient healing power that water offers can be transformative, and sometimes this simple pleasure is the perfect medicine for whatever ails us. The sensuous comfort water provides connects us back to both our bodies and the Earth’s beauty. Creating an oasis evocative of these experiences is not far out of reach in our daily lives, and can be done easily at home. Rather than rushing through another quick shower, try lighting a few natural beeswax candles, play some soothing music, and draw a warm bath infused with fragrant oils, relaxing salts, or therapeutic herbs. Making this a regular ritual, even just once a month, can improve your health in many ways. […]

Herbal Love Gift Guide!

If you find yourself plucking petals over whether or not you actually love Valentine's Day, it's good to remember that February 14th is a nice excuse to honor that special someone in your life. Why not reinvent the holiday by pampering your beautiful lover, best friend, or fluffy cat with pure herbal decadence?  These all natural and organic gift ideas will be thoroughly enjoyed by the one you hold dear. Whether sipping rose tea during a candlelit bath, offering a soothing massage with aromatic oils, or crafting homemade chocolates and perfume, your love will shine bright.       Essential Oil Kits Did you know that there are 60 roses in every drop of rose essential oil? These sets are much better than a bouquet! We love the romantic collections of sensuous and arousing essential oils found in both the Lovers and the Rose Essential Oil Samplers. Each pure botanical oil comes in its own glass vial, […]

  • Herbal Chest Rub Recipes for Winter

Herbal Chest Rub Recipes

Need something cooling and soothing to open up the respiratory passages, but want to steer clear of petroleum-based products? Unfortunately, most of the chest rubs we grew up using from the drugstore are made with a base of petroleum jelly and turpentine, along with herbal ingredients that are actually helpful, like eucalyptus and menthol. Such a shame! Making your own rubs at home is super easy and allows you to harness the powerful benefits of these plants without relying on a byproduct of the oil industry. All you need is a simple salve base of organic carrier oil and beeswax to get started. You can then add essential oils or menthol crystals to formulate a remedy for your needs.       You may be familiar with the strong scent of menthol, but what exactly are menthol crystals? Menthol is a solid constituent of mint oil that gives the plant its strong fragrance. These potent crystals are made from cornmint (Mentha arvensis) essential oil […]

  • Winter Solstice Essential Oil Blend

Winter Solstice Essential Oil Blend

My memories of December take me back to a white farmhouse in the middle of grass seed fields, with my four brothers and one sister, poking ribs and making jokes around the wood stove. If we were lucky, we'd be surrounded by snow and immersed in the scents of our winter home. There's nothing I love more than the aroma of solstice spices, the most beautiful tree all lit up, and the warmth of a wood stove. A tradition in our house every year was making cute little gingerbread decorations for our yule tree. This essential oil blend is an ode to those sweet and cozy moments, hanging freshly made decorations with the crackling of wood tickling my ears from the next room. I like Douglas Fir essential oil in this recipe, but your favorite tree scent will work just fine too! A little sweetness from benzoin resin essential oil or vanilla absolute will help bring out the spicy notes of […]

  • Pumpkin Spice Chia Pudding Recipe

Coconut Spice Chia Pudding Recipe

Are you looking for a super healthful treat that's also decadent and satisfying? Maybe a dessert option that will be adored by all of your vegan, paleo, gluten-free, and sweet-tooth loving friends?  Well, this might just be the one! I love pudding, especially tapioca-style, but can definitely do without the loads of sugar, eggs, and dairy found in classic recipes. With creamy coconut milk, fragrant chai spices, a spot of honey, and that luscious texture from chia seeds, this recipe has become a fast favorite. Super easy to whip up, it's a great holiday party option too. Feel free to experiment with other flavor combinations that strike your fancy!          Coconut & Chai Spice Chia Pudding Ingredients: 1/3 cup organic chia seeds
 1 can (13.5 oz) of organic full fat coconut milk
 13.5 oz of water
 3/4 tsp organic cinnamon powder 1/2 tsp organic cardamom powder 1/4 tsp organic ginger powder 1/8 tsp organic clove powder 1/8 tsp organic […]

  • Fall Favorites: Organic Hops Flowers

Fall Favorites: Organic Hops Flowers

Here in the Willamette Valley, leaves are beginning their autumnal descent from the lofty tops of trees, destined for the inward journey of the composting process. Fall color abounds, and the height of summer seems long ago. Organic Hops Flowers are another useful member of the Cannabaceae plant family, and one of our favorite calming herbs for this time of year. Hops are most famous today as a prominent ingredient in beer. In fact, the first documented use of hops in beer is from the 9th century. Before this period, a wide variety of bitter herbs and flowers, including Dandelion root, Burdock root, Horehound, Mugwort and Heather flowers, were used as bittering agents in the brewing process. Hops eventually separated themselves from the pack due to their flavor balancing the sweetness of the malt with bitterness and contributing a variety of desirable aromas. Hops flowers have an even longer history of usage in […]

  • Crunchy Herb Roasted Chickpeas

Crispy Herb Roasted Chickpeas

It's snack time! Garbanzo beans are one of my favorite legumes. Super versatile with a buttery texture, I love to toss them into soups, stews, curries, salads, or blend them into delicious hummus. However, I've recently discovered a new obsession… A few months ago, I noticed grocery aisles filling up with all sorts of new crunchy bean snack products. A lovely alternative to fried chips and processed puffs, these crispy, crunchy, roasted treats offer a crave-worthy way to enjoy the protein and fiber packed goodness of beans. So…with inspiration in my heart and a hungry belly, I started making these beauties at home. The recipe is incredibly simple and can be switched up with your favorite herbs and spices to create a never ending rotation of exciting flavors. A savory combination of green herbs, lemon, and onion has been my go-to lately, but I also love to sprinkle some Cajun Seasoning, Mesquite, or Thai Curry Blend on them. Feel free […]

  • Easy Homemade Vanilla Extract Recipe

How to Make Vanilla Extract

Along with cinnamon and nutmeg, vanilla is a quintessential ingredient to keep stocked in the cupboard this time of year. With a delicate and deeply enchanting flavor that's instantly recognizable, vanilla imparts a soft creaminess to desserts and cocktails that is nothing short of pure magic. (How about some Spiked Vanilla Bean Cocoa and Chai Spice Oatmeal Cookies to experience vanilla bliss?) Making your own vanilla extract at home is super easy and can be used in any recipe that calls for store-bought. All you need are two simple ingredients and a glass jar, or a few cork bottles if you want to make holiday gifts for friends.   Why are vanilla beans so precious? Vanilla pods are the fruit of a stunning orchid (Vanilla planifolia) that's native to Central America. These ephemeral flowers open for just one day and each must be carefully hand-pollinated, since there’s only one bee known to pollinate them in the wild. After 9 months on the vine, the green vanilla orchid […]

  • Online Course: Taste of Herbs

Join us for the Taste of Herbs!

Have you been enjoying the Flavor Wheel we offered as a free download last week? It's such an incredibly practical tool for anyone learning about natural health and herbal remedies. We love it! Maybe it inspired you to look deeper into choosing the right herb for a specific person’s need? If so, we are excited to present a wonderful online course that simplifies that process and provides a roadmap for making these choices easier… It's called Taste of Herbs with Rosalee de la Forêt!   Want more details? Visit the Taste of Herbs website now to learn all about this fantastic online course . Enrollment is now open!  Questions about the Taste of Herbs course? Contact LearningHerbs here!