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Gifts from the herb garden in the dead of winter Happy Saturday

Saturday, 18 Feb 12 Rainy 8°C / 46°F

while I grow my own for those who don’t you can still make this My recipie is a bit different and involves tinctures premade and cocconut oil but this one will work just as well

What you’ll need
•1-qt. canning jar with lid
•2 cups dried calendula petals
•2 cups dried plantain leaves
•2 cups dried comfrey leaves
•Sunflower oil or olive oil
•Cheesecloth
•Rubber band
•Glass measuring cup
•¼ cup finely grated beeswax per each cup infused oil
•Double boiler
•Water
•Stove
•Plastic spoon
•4 drops vitamin E oil per cup of infused oil
•4 drops lavender oil per each cup of infused oil

1 ) Buy dried calendula flowers from an herbal supply store or pick fresh flowers when the bloom is full and the flower is at its peak. Air-dry fresh flowers on a metal screen or loosely placed on a cookie sheet. Flowers usually will be dried in about two weeks. Dried plantain and comfrey are available at herbal supply stores or any store that offers soap and candle supplies.

2) Put the dried plantain and comfrey leaves and calendula flower petals into a clean quart-size jar. Canning jars are a durable choice. Canning jars are available at grocery, kitchen and discount stores.

3)Pour sunflower or olive oil, or a combination of the two oils, over the dried petals and leaves until there is about 1 inch of oil covering the dried ingredients. Screw the jar lid on tight.

4)Place the jar in direct sunlight for about three weeks. Shake the jar vigorously every day. The contents of the jar may sink below the oil level or float on top of the oil due to the individual petal or leaf’s density.

5)Unscrew the jar lid. Place a piece of cheesecloth over the mouth of the jar. Stretch a rubber band around the jar mouth so the cloth is tightly secured. Drain the oil from the jar into a glass measuring cup.

6)Fill the lower portion of a double boiler with water. Place the top portion of the boiler pan into position. Put the pan onto a stove. Bring the water to a boil, and turn down the heat so the water continues at a low simmer.

7) Use the measuring denotations on the glass measuring cup to note how many cups of infused oil your mixture has yielded. Add the infused oil and ¼ cup of finely grated beeswax to a double boiler. Allow the wax to melt in the oil.

8)Add four drops of vitamin E oil and four drops of Lavender oil and stir in the melted wax and infused oil for five minutes.

9)Test the consistency of the balm by scooping some onto a metal teaspoon and putting the spoon into the refrigerator. Leave the balm and spoon in the refrigerator for 10 minutes. If the balm remains runny, add 1/8 cup of finely grated beeswax to your balm mixture, and allow it to melt. Retest.

10)Pour the balm into small tins or jars. Allow the balm to cool. The balm will set overnight. Screw the lids on once the balm is settled

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