As the weather cools off this time of year, I find myself in serious cozy mode. For me, that means slipping into sweaters and fuzzy socks, baking tasty treats and using my fireplace every chance I get. While I find coziness in touch, in taste, in all the senses really, there is one sense that often gets overlooked in my home, that of smell. Mainly this is because I'm not huge on chemicals and lab-made perfumes. I do like scented candles but those with a subtle natural fragrance can be hard to find, not to mention expensive. Enter, simmering potpourri.
Today's recipe is a simple holiday medley of mandarin oranges (dried peels and fresh slices), fresh cranberries, whole cloves, dried bay leaves and ground cinnamon.
Once you've got the above ingredients together grab a medium size pot. (You'll want one large enough so that you don't have to continuously refill it with water but not so large you drown the scent.) Now I bet you're asking yourself just how much of these ingredients do I need? To be honest the amounts are really up to you, I don't think you can go wrong when it comes to making a potpourri but here are the amounts I used for reference.
- Peels of 4 mandarin oranges, dried
- 1 fresh mandarin orange, cut into slices
- Two cups fresh cranberries
- 1 tablespoon whole cloves
- 3 dried bay leaves
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Add your ingredients to the pot and fill with water until it's about one inch from the top. Put on the stove, turn to high heat and bring to a boil. Immediately turn the heat down until your mixture settles down to a simmer.
You'll have to add water to the pot occasionally, so I would recommend setting a timer for about 45 minutes as a reminder. Trust me, you do not want to forget about it! I've done that before and ending up ruining the pot, not fun. Now time to sit back, relax and enjoy the subtle holiday scent!
Here are some other delicious combinations to try:
- Apple slices, lemon peels, cinnamon sticks
- Orange peels, lemon slices, ground cinnamon
- Fresh cranberries, orange slices, rosemary sprigs
- Apple slices, pumpkin spice, whole cloves, ground nutmeg, cinnamon sticks
- Lemon slices, rosemary sprigs, cinnamon, vanilla extract
Do you have a combination that's tried and true? We would love to hear your favorites blends in the comments below!