Imbolc Lavender & Rosemary Seed Cake — Gather Victoria

There is nothing like cake to celebrate a special occasion and Imbolc (on February 2nd) is no exception. And I think this “naked” sponge cake would be a wonderful addition to any Imbolc Feast! It’s kept gorgeously moist with brushings of lavender and rosemary syrup (between cake layers) but the slight tang of the Mascarpone…

via Imbolc Lavender & Rosemary Seed Cake — Gather Victoria

Already Thinking About Designing A Herb Garden?

Good Witches Homestead

There are many books written on the various types of herb gardens. Invest in at least one good book on growing herbs that includes garden tips, what herbs to use for what purpose, and harvesting guidelines. Several types of gardens with plant suggestions are outlined below. You may notice that some herbs appear in more than one garden type. This is because herbs are versatile and have many uses.

Culinary Herb Gardens

Historically, a culinary garden is planted as close to your kitchen door as possible. This allows you to step outside and harvest the particular herb you need for the dish you are preparing. If you have too much shade, or your hardscaping won’t allow you to plant right outside your door, you can add culinary herbs to the vegetable garden or plant a container garden instead. Culinary gardens are generally governed by what the planter uses the most…

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Liver Cleanse: A Simple Step-by-Step Guide

Crooked Bear Creek Organic Herbs

If you have a sluggish metabolism, are constantly ill, or follow a poor diet, it’s time to discover what a cleanse can do for you. Follow our simple, step-by-step guide to our 6-day liver cleanse.

The liver is the human body’s largest internal organ and one of the most important for survival. Without it, bodily tissues would die from lack of nutrients and oxygen and the digestive process would not be able to take place. One of the liver’s most important functions is the removal of toxins from your system. This function is why cleansing your liver and living a healthy lifestyle is so crucial. Performing a liver cleanse can help remove toxic buildup for overall health and wellness. Before doing a liver cleanse, it is important to understand what the liver is and all of the necessary functions it performs.

The Liver’s Location & Design

Inside your body, the liver sits…

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The Liver Cleansing Juice You’ll Crave!

Crooked Bear Creek Organic Herbs

Beets, kale, ginger, lemon, and carrots are some of the best liver cleansing foods. Juice them together and you have a delicious and easy way to cleanse your liver. This juice will kick-start your day!

Beet Juice Recipe with Liver Cleansing Foods

Your liver is your main detoxifying organ, and it can get bogged down from time to time depending on your diet, activity level, and environment. When an overload of toxins becomes too much for your liver to handle, toxic compounds can store within tissues and decrease your quality of health. Cleansing your liver with a liver detox can be helpful for revving up the function of your body’s natural detox mechanisms.

Juice Your Way to Health

If you’re cleansing your liver, you need to provide your body with nutrition that is easy to digest. You don’t want your body to spend its energy digesting food, but you definitely need to keep…

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Looking For Something To Forage This Weekend? Check Out These Jelly Mushrooms!

Greetings, and Happy New Year!

In my neck of the woods, January is certainly not the most prolific month in terms of wild edible mushrooms.  Snow-covered soil and freezing temperatures aren’t very conducive to ample mushroom activity.

Lately, however, conditions around here have been quite different.

The ground is devoid of snow and temperatures have been mild.  As a result, our wild woody decomposers — in particular, the fungi that feed on trees — continue to thrive.

Chief among these winter woody decomposers are our jelly fungi.  These mushrooms are unique in that their fruiting bodies can persist for months on a stick, log, or stump in a dehydrated or frozen state… only to rebound during a winter rain or warm spell.

Two fascinating jelly fungi that flourish during the winter season include the world-famous Wood Ear (popular in soup recipes) and the Amber Jelly Roll (a close look-alike).  Both mushrooms are edible and both are often found in abundance… even amongst snow and freezing temperatures.

If you’re interested in foraging these two enticing jelly fungi this weekend (and perhaps all winter long), check out the brand new video!

Speaking of edible gelatinous mushrooms, the Orange Jelly Fungus is another common component of the winter forest.  Though I don’t feature this species in the aforementioned video, I do discuss its key features in a recent Instagram post.  Check it out!

Thanks for reading and watching, and as always, thank you for your support!

-Adam Haritan

Food as Medicine: Pistachio (Pistacia vera, Anacardiaceae)

Crooked Bear Creek Organic Herbs

The pistachio (Pistacia vera) is the only commercially grown species in its genus, which belongs to the Anacardiaceae family. Members of the genus Pistacia are among the oldest flowering nut trees and are small to medium in size, and characterized by their ability to exude mastic (plant resin).1,2 Other economically important plants in Anacardiaceae include cashew (Anacardium occidentale) and mango (Mangifera indica).

Pistachio trees are temperate, deciduous trees adapted to the dry, hot, drought-prone climates of the Middle East.1,2,3 The pistachio tree can grow to a height of 10 meters (about 33 feet) and has pinnately compound leaves containing three to seven leaflets.3,4 The trees are dioecious; both male and female pistachio trees produce their own flowers.4 Female trees are wind-pollinated and produce green and brown flowers with no petals during the early summer.1,5 Female pistachio trees produce clusters of nuts…

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Why Is Peppermint Like Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

The Herb Society of America Blog

By Kathleen M Hale, Western Reserve Herb Society

peppermint for XmasMy herb spiral is my mad scientist laboratory.  Just outside my kitchen door, it is the only part of my garden to experience full sun.  The soil is much-amended with compost.  And, that is where I plant essential kitchen herbs and the occasional experiment, like a new herb that bears close watching.

However, over the last few gardening seasons, it has devolved largely into a jungle of mint.  Mystery mint.  Muddle mint.  A promiscuous genetic mix of whatever mint I have ever planted, plus whatever mint blew in on its own. In my defense, that’s what mint does.  And sometimes, the result is something else.

Peppermint (Mentha x piperita) is a hybrid plant, a cross between water mint (Mentha aquatica) and spearmint (Mentha picata).  It was first mistakenly identified by Linnaeus in 1753 as a separate…

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La Befana Cake: Honouring The Old Witch of Winter – Gather Victoria — Good Witches Homestead

According to Italian anthropologists and authors Claudia and Luigi Manciocco, Befana’s origins back to Neolithic beliefs in a great goddess associated with fertility and agriculture. Author Judika Illes writes, “Befana may predate Christianity and may originally be a goddess of ancestral spirits, forest, and the passage of time.” In the book Vestiges of Ancient Manners […]

via La Befana Cake: Honouring The Old Witch of Winter – Gather Victoria — Good Witches Homestead