Is your house getting a little stuffy from being closed up due to the cooler weather? Do you need a breath of Autumn? You can perk up your senses by making a simmering potpourri with items you have in your kitchen. It’s quick and easy. I will give you the basics and you can go from there.
Cinnamon sticks, broken into pieces, or 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
6 whole cloves or ½ tsp ground cloves
Several slices of orange peel or 1 teaspoon dried orange peel
1 teaspoon nutmeg or some fresh grated
Throw the spices in the pot and fill ½ to ¾ full of water. I have a stove top simmering pot, but you can use a regular pan if you don’t have one. Turn your stove burner on low. You want it to warm up and just about simmer, not boil. Then enjoy the aroma of the season.
Experiment with the spices you have on hand. Mix a couple together or mix a lot. Some other spices you might try are: lemon or lime peel, apple peel, vanilla, allspice, anise, bay leaves, ginger, almond or peppermint extract, pumpkin spice, etc. Don’t throw your old spices away – use them in the simmering pot. If you just ate an orange or peeled an apple for baking, use it in your pot instead of throwing it away. The peels can be stored in your refrigerator for up to a week.
Make gifts of the simmering spices. Use whole seeds and fancy jars for gifts. Make a batch and put it in a jar. Tie a decorative spoon to the jar. Add tag with instructions. For favors, make single batches and put then into small plastic bags tied with a ribbon and a tag attached.
Please use caution when simmering. Never leave the pot unattended. Check it every ½ hour to an hour to see if water needs to be added. Set your timer to remind you. The water will turn dark as you simmer.