Winter is magic

Nov 3, 2016

The winter is most people’s least favourite season. Chilly, wet, dark and dreary is how we often think of it, but the brighter side can be cheering – as can vitamin D!

The dark evenings mean for many people that it’s time to share the table with friends. We can hunt out recipes for comfort food again, banished last Spring with our winter coats, and relish kitchen smells of spicy soup on the stove and fruit cake in the oven.

Did you know that hot food smells much better than cold because aromatic molecules travel more effectively in heat than cold? The same applies to heating and vaporising essential oils. Ask your local member of the Irish Association of Health Stores for Irish-made Winter Magic, a rich aromatic blend of orange, cinnamon and frankincense essential oils. You can make your own blends too, combining other oils such as clove and pine for a festive aroma.

magic winter

Overall organic tea tree and eucalyptus essential oils are regular winter hits, tea tree to help deter head lice and protect when winter bugs abound and eucalyptus to relieve stuffy noses. Peppermint is useful for its anti-nausea properties and can be really successful in a roller ball applied to the forehead to relieve headaches – BUT do remember that no essential oils should ever be taken internally. These are potent plant products and can be toxic if swallowed, besides which no brand of oils has been registered as safe to use as a medicine.

Back to kitchen smells, generated by a happy cook using top ingredients. Cooking up spiced pears with star anise, mulled apple juice or wine with cinnamon and cloves, chilli beans or fish cheered up with harissa paste, roast cauliflower scented with cumin and coriander? Just the names of these dishes makes my juices run, and you can find all the spices in your local health store. Do I need to mention organic mixed spice and dried fruits for Christmas cooking? Swap ideas for recipes with us and we’ll love you even more!

Finally, if you need to banish kitchen smells or any unpleasant odours of another kind, try vaporising lemon myrtle or lemongrass oils. These work a treat without any of the nasties contained in synthetic readymade products.

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