Lavender & Holy Basil Infused Lemonade

Picture this: a beverage that is refreshing, uplifting, floral, cooling and perfectly sweet. It has a perfectly sour tang that quenches your thirst on a hot summer’s day in the backyard. 

Is your mouth watering yet?! It’s time to level up your lemonade, ladies and gents. I’m so happy to be partnering with Mountain Rose Herbs in bringing you this herbal lemonade recipe. I guarantee it will be your new favorite summertime beverage!

Plus, it’s deceptively simply to make. Do not be intimated by the herbal part. Doing this extra step to enhance your classic lemonade is WELL worth it.

Holy Basil is an herb that I have fallen in love with throughout my years as a holistic dietitian and now an aspiring herbalist. It is a foundational herb in Ayurveda and is revered to have many health benefits and applications.

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I get asked often where and how I purchase my herbs? This is a valid question! Herbal procurement is very important. Herbs are used for both culinary and medicinal benefits in our home, and therefore, I want to buy the highest quality I can that align with my values.

Mountain Rose Herbs is a company that I have long revered as pioneers in not only the herbal sector, but the organic agriculture one as well. They truly blow me away with their sustainable and ethical initiatives and standards.

From composting and installing solar panels, to organizing riparian restoration projects and supporting nonprofits, they are accomplishing great things and I am so happy to be partnering with them on this recipe.

With their dedication to environmental stewardship and focus on reduction, reclamation, and recycling, Mountain Rose Herbs was the first company in Oregon to receive TRUE Zero Waste certification from Green Business Certification Inc. (AMAZING!)

Plus, even with their incredible quality, their herbs are shockingly affordable.

Okay okay enough about them… you get the picture. Let’s get to the recipe!

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Lavender & Holy Basil Infused Lemonade

Ingredients:

  • 6 cups water

  • 2 cups fresh lemon juice (don’t thrown away the lemons peels! Compost them or make citrus infused cleaning vinegar)

  • 3 tbsp dried holy basil

  • 3 tbsp dried lavender 

  • 1 cup simple syrup (2 cups water 2 cups sugar- heat water on stove top and dissolve the sugar into it. Store in the fridge and keep on hand for iced teas, cocktails, and lemonade like this! Step it up a level with my Peach Lavender Simple Syrup.)

Method:

  1. Heat 2 cups of the water in a small saucepan on medium.

  2. Once the water is heated, add the lavender and holy basil.

  3. Allow the herbs to steep in the water as it cools for 20 minutes.

  4. In a large picture, stir together lemon juice, simple syrup, and the remaining 4 cups of water.

  5. Strain the herbal infusion into the pitcher and stir. Serve over ice.

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Sustainably Supported by Mountain Rose Herbs. As always, all opinions are mine & these are products I truly love!  #sponsored

Peach Lavender Simple Syrup

I’m a sucker for a food flavored simply syrup to add flair and fun to the most average of drinks. Iced tea, cocktails, club soda- you name it! This has got to be one of my most favorite simple syrups I’ve made yet! And with it being peach season here in North Carolina, I have plenty of peaches on my hands.

Peach Lavender Simple Syrup with Hibiscus Tea

Peach Lavender Simple Syrup with Hibiscus Tea

Ingredients

  • 2 cups water

  • 2 cups white organic sugar

  • 1 large peach- cubed

  • 2 tbsp dried lavender

.Method

  1. Boil 2 cups water.

  2. Add sugar, peaches, and lavender and turn down to a simmer. Simmer for 30 minutes. Crush the peaches when they get soft. Stir occasionally.

  3. Strain the syrup. Store for up to 2 weeks in the fridge.

I hope you love it! If you try it, let me know in the comments below!

Homemade Salt & Pepper Crackers

If there is one thing I love… CRACKERS. Salty, crunchy. I could sit down and eat a whole box in one sitting… but there are never many in a box! Seems like a waste of box, huh?

Get your flour in bulk and you will can make enough crackers to last forever. These are SO tasty and my go to cracker recipe as of late.

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INGREDIENTS

  • 1 ½ cups all purpose flour

  • 1 tsp sea salt

  • 2 tsp sugar

  • 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper

  • 1 ½ Tablespoons Olive Oil

  • ½ cup water

  • extra sea salt for topping if desired

METHOD

  1. Preheat oven to 500 degrees.

  2. Combine flour, salt, and sugar in a bowl, whisk to combine.

  3. Stir in water and oil, stir until fully combined. If the dough is still too dry, add 1 tbsp of water at a time until it forms a ball but is not too sticky.

  4. Place dough out onto a lightly floured piece of parchment paper.

  5. Roll dough until it is about ⅛ the of an inch thick. Add flour as needed to prevent it from sticking.

  6. Trim the edges. Roll the trimmings the same way.

  7. Cut the dough into small squares using a sharp knife. Sprinkle with a little more salt and pepper. Use a fork to prick each square a few times.

  8. Transfer the dough, still on the parchment paper, onto a baking sheet and place it in the oven. Immediately reduce heat to 425.

  9. Bake for 12-17 minutes, of until crackers are starting to become golden.

  10. Allow them to cool and then store them in a very air tight container. If any moisture gets in, they will become stale and hard!

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Cinnamon Ginger Peach Butter

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It’s peach season here in North Carolina! Blake and I went to a little farm this past week and got more peaches than we could handle.

Who am I kidding… I can handle them!

I canned peaches yesterday, and today I gave a shot at peach butter! I’m not going to lie… I am absurdly proud of this recipe. I’m so happy with how the flavors turned out. A lot of the “butter” you find in stores is too sweet- this is JUST right. The cinnamon and ginger add extra dimension and a little spicy kick!

This is a great recipe for that fruit that is bruised or just to ripe to be palatable. #teamnofoodwaste! You can also can this recipe if you are into that… Then you can have local peaches all year around!

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Ingredients

  • 6 medium-large sized ripe peaches

  • 1 cup water

  • 1/2 inch nob of ginger- peeled sliced

  • 1/3 tsp cinnamon

  • 2 tbsp coconut sugar (or white sugar)

Method

  1. First, we have to remove the skin of the peaches! Cut all peaches in half and remove the pits. Place peaches in a small saucepan of boiling water for 30 seconds. Remove them with a slotted spoon place them in ice water, After soaking in ice water for 15 seconds, the skins should slide off easily. If not, return them to the boiling water for another 15 seconds and try again.

  2. Once all the skins are removed, cut the peaches in half again. Add the chunks to a small sauce pan with the 1 cup water. Bring water to a boil and them simmer for 25 mins. Stir occasionally to make sure they don’t stick to the bottom and burn.

  3. Remove the peaches from the burner. Add the peaches and ginger to a blender and puree until very smooth and no chunks remain.

  4. Add the puree to the saucepan again. Stir in the sugar and cinnamon. Cook the puree again over medium heat- stirring constantly so that it doesn’t burn! Do this for about 15 minutes. (sorry I know it’s a while- but it’s worth it to ensure it doesn’t burn!) The point here is to cause the water to evaporate and the butter to thicken.

  5. You will know it is ready when it is thick enough to somewhat hold its shape when you stir. (Picture of this below!)

  6. Allow to cool, pour into a jar, and store in the fridge! Serve with toast or biscuits on a fine Sunday morning! 

I hope you make this and LOVE it! It will last about 2 weeks in the fridge.

xo,

meg

This is how you’ll know if it’s ready! See that texture on top? it does not immediately melt back.

This is how you’ll know if it’s ready! See that texture on top? it does not immediately melt back.

Ginger & Turmeric Juice Shot

The Mr. and I and I have been doing a shot of this juice in the morning for the past few weeks and we’re so into it! It’s super simple and easy to make without a juicer. It’s such a good energy boost and makes my stomach feel great. 

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Ingredients:

  • 4 inch knob of ginger root

  • 2 inch knob of turmeric root

  • 4 tbsp raw honey

  • a pinch of black pepper (optional- but increases bioavailability of turmeric)

  • 4 cups of water

Method

  • Simply combine ingredients in a blender. Blend well until everything is ground. Pour through a mesh sieve into a storage glass. Dilute and sweeten as needed to fit your own preferences! The ginger can be QUITE spicy!!

  • Enjoy! It’s good for about 4 days in the fridge. If you don’t think you’ll drink that much, just cut the recipe in half.

xoxo,

meg

Fermented Radishes with Garlic & Dill

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Pros of living in Florida — produce year around!

Pros of living in Florida — produce year around!

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of filtered water

  • 1 tbsp of pink salt

  • 2 bunches of radishes

  • 1 handful of dill

  • 5 garlic cloves (you can use less.. I just really like garlic!)

  • Pint size large mouth mason jar

  • Smaller jar to use as a weight

  • Cheese cloth (or any cloth, really) & rubber band

Method:

  1. Make the brine by boiling 2 cups of filtered water with 1 tbsp of salt.

  2. Wash your radishes well with warm water. Remove tops and tails. Slice into thin quarters or halves.

  3. Add dill and garlic to the bottom of the jar. Add radishes. Pour in the brine - enough to submerge the veggies by a few inches.

  4. Weight down the contents with the smaller jar to prevent the veggies from rising above the surface. (They must remain submerged under the water!)

  5. Cover the jar with cloth and rubber band.

  6. Allow time to ferment- at least 3 days. Store in a dark, room temp location until desired flavor / texture is achieved.

  7. Store in the fridge. I personally love serving them with hummus and crackers! SO delicious!

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Traditional “Christmas Tradition” Cinnamon Rolls

Traditional “Christmas Tradition” Cinnamon Rolls

Traditional “Christmas Tradition” Cinnamon Rolls

Ingredients

Dough: 

  • 3/4 cup warm water (110 degrees) 

  • 2 1/4 tsp active yeast 

  • 1/4 cup sugar

  • 2 eggs

  • 5 tbsp butter, unsalted

  • 3 1/4 cup flour 

  • 1 tsp salt 

Filling:

  • 5 tbsp unsalted butter, melted

  • 2 tbsp cinnamon

  • 3/4 cup coconut sugar

Cream cheese frosting:

  • 3 oz cream cheese, softened 

  • 5 tbsp unsalted butter, softened 

  • 2/3 cup powdered sugar 

  • 1 tsp vanilla extract 

Method:

  1. First, activate the yeast. Dissolve yeast in 3/4 cup warm water (110-115 degrees F) Add 1/2 tsp sugar. Wait 5-10 minute for mixture to foam. (TIP: if you do not have a thermometer, heat water in a small sauce pan until it is warm enough to where it “stings” your figure, but you are able to leave your finger in the water. If you have to pull it back, it is too hot. If there is no “sting”, it is not warm enough.) If you yeast does not foam, throw it out and start over.

  2. Once yeast is done, add to the bowl of an electric mixer. Add in sugar, salt, eggs, and butter. Mix well until combined. Next, gradually add the flour. Add as much as you can until it becomes too much for the mixer. Remove from the bowl and continue to need by hand for 5-8 minutes. 

  3. Transfer dough ball to an oiled bowl. Cover with a warm bowl. Allow dough to rise for 60 to 90 minutes- until dough has doubled in size. 

  4. Transfer dough to a well-floured surface and roll out into a large rectangle- about 15X8. 

  5. In a small bowl, mix coconut sugar, butter, and cinnamon. Spread this sugar mixture all over the surface of the dough. 

  6. Tightly roll the dough into a wheel- starting at the shorter side. Cut with a sharp knife into 9 rolls.

  7. Place rolls in an oiled 9x9 inch baking dish or a round 9 in pan. Cover with a warm towel again and allow rolls to rise for another 30 mins. 

  8. Preheat oven to 350. Remove towel from rolls and bake for 20- 25 minutes. 

  9. To make the frosting: combine cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. Beat until smooth and fluffy. 

  10. Allow rolls to cool for 5 mins before adding icing. Serve immediately. 

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Spicy Nut Biscotti

I’m so excited to share this recipe with you all! This is a family recipe that my mom and her sister’s make every Christmas- and have for as long as I can remember! Biscotti is such a great holiday gift as well! That and a bag of organic, fair trade coffee - that’s a grade A gift!

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup butter

  • 1/2 cup sugar

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar

  • 2 1/2 tsp baking powder

  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon

  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg

  • 3 eggs

  • 2 tsp ground ginger root

  • 3 1/4 cup flour

  • 1 1/2 cup finely chopped nuts

  • 1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chip pieces

  • 1 tsp coconut oil

Method

1. Beat butter in large bowl on med to high for 30 seconds.  Add sugars, baking powder,

cinnamon nutmeg; beat till combined. Beat in eggs and gingerroot till combined.

beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Stir in any remaining

flour with a wooden spoon. set aside 2 tbsp of the nuts. Stir in remaining

nut into dough. Divide dough in half.

2. Shape each portion into 12 in roll. Place 5 in apart on a parchment covered cookie

sheet. Flatten slightly to 2 in width. Sprinkle reserved chopped nuts on top

of loaves.

3. Bake in a 375 for 20-25 min or till lightly browned. cool 1 hour on cookie

sheet

4. Cut into 1/2 in slices bake 325 for 10 min. turn, bake 10-15 min more . cool

on wire rack

5. Melt chocolate pieces and coconut oil. Dip bottom edge of each cookie into

chocolate. (FYI- I forgot to do this step before I took my photo)


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Spike Apple Cider with Whipped Cream

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Ingredients

  • 10 apples, quartered (I used a mixture of Red Delicious and Granny Smith) 

  • 3/4 cup coconut sugar

  • 4 cinnamon sticks

  • 2 tbsp whole cloves 

  • 1 tbsp nutmeg 

  • 1 cup cold heavy whipping cream 

  • 1/2 tsp vanilla 

  • spiced rum of choice


Method

  1. Quarter applies into large chunks and place them in a large stockpot. Add enough water to cover them a few inches. Add cinnamon sticks, cloves, nutmeg, sugar. Bring to a boil and stir to dissolve sugar. Reduce to a simmer. Continue to simmer, covered, for 2 hours. 

  2. While this is cooking, make whipped cream: place mixing bowl and whisk of a standing or electric mixer in the freezer for 20-30 mins. Pour heavy whipping cream and vanilla into the bowl and whisk on high until medium to stiff peaks form. About 1 minute. Be careful to not over beat. 

  3. Strain apple mixture through a sieve. Discard solids. 

  4. To assemble drink, pour 1.5 ounces of rum into drinking glasses. Add warm cider, and top with whipped cream. 

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Gingerbread Cookies- For Decorating & Eating!

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Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour 

  • 1 tbsp cinnamon

  • 3 tsp ground ginger

  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg

  • 1/3 cup sugar

  • 1/2 tsp salt

  • 1/4 tsp baking soda

  • 1 stick (4 tbsp) softened butter

  • 1/3 cup coconut sugar

  • 1 large egg

  • 1/3 cup blackstrap molasses

Method

  1. In a large bowl, combine the following ingredients: flour, spices, salt and baking soda. 

  2. Combine butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat on medium for about 1 minute. Add the egg and beat until smooth. 

  3. Reduce speed to low and add the flour mixture slowly. Add the molasses and beat until well mixed.

  4. At this time, wrap your dough in beeswax wrap or saran wrap. Chill dough for about an hour. This is to prevent it from being too sticky and easier to work with. 

  5. When you are ready to bake, preheat over to 350 degrees. 

  6. On a well floured surface and a well floured rolling pin, roll out your chilled dough until it is about 1/4th inch thick. Cut cookies and using a spatula, place them on a baking dish lined with parchment paper. Save, press together, and re-roll scraps. 

  7. Before putting the cooking in the oven- make a hole in the top using a wooden skewer if you are planning on hanging them as decorations! If you forget to do this, it will be impossible to make a whole they are baked without breaking them. 

  8. Bake cookies for about 12-15 mins, or until they are dull and dry. Be careful not to overcook them if you plan on eating them! They get dry! :)

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Cheesy Potato Quiche with Cabbage, Bacon, and Leeks

I don’t know why… but quiche just screams holidays to me. It’s not like quiche is a particularly festive dish… but for some reason during the holidays, toast and peanut butter just won’t cut it. 

So this weekend, I whipped up a quiche with what I had in the fridge. You may not have heard of cabbage quiche before… but don’t knock it until you try it! haha. 

Plus, this crust turned out incredible! Minimal ingredients and gluten free. But what’s NOT tasty with butter?! Or bacon. 

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Crust

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cup blanched flour

  • 1/2 tsp sea salt

  • 1/4 cup butter- chilled

  • 1 egg

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a round pie pan or baking dish well. 

  2. In a large bowl, combine flour, and salt. 

  3. Add butter and use a potato masher or fork and knife to cut into the butter. Do this until it breaks up into very small pieces and is immersed well into the flour. The dough will be crumbly. A food processor would also work well for this. 

  4. Stir in the egg. The dough will still be fairly dry and crumbly. 

  5. Press the dough into the bottom of the pan with your fingers. Press it up the sides. 

  6. Bake for 12 mins until golden brown. 

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Quiche

Ingredients

  • 6 eggs

  • 6 pieces of bacon

  • 1 cup cabbage, shredded - I used a mandolin but a sharp knife will do

  • 1 cup leeks, thin sliced 

  • 1/2 cup potatoes, small cubed  

  • 1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, shredded 

  • 3 tbsp heavy whipping cream

Method

  1. In a large skillet, cook bacon until crispy.

  2. Remove bacon from the skillet. Keep about 1 tbsp bacon grease in the pan.

  3. Slice and clean leek. If you don’t know how to do this, read this. It’s very simple, you just want to make sure you clean them so you don’t have grit in your quiche!

  4. Add cabbage, leeks, and potatoes to the skillet on medium heat. Cook down until all the vegetables are well cooked, caramelized, and tender. 

  5. Chop bacon into small pieces.

  6. Beat eggs and cream in a large bowl with a fork. 

  7. Add bacon, veggies and cheese to eggs. Pour mixture into prepared pie crust. 

  8. Cook on 375 for 30-35 mins until the center is firm and completely set. Let cool for 5-10 minutes before slicing and serving.

Enjoy! 

xo,

meg

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Chai Tea Latte Concentrate

I am so thrilled to present this recipe to you all!

I LOVE chai tea lattes. Especially as the weather begins to cool down and I want to cozy up with a warm beverage. (But who am I kidding… I drink Chai lattes even when it’s 100 degrees!)

I’m a sucker for the spice of chai and the body and soul warmth that it brings. Making this concentrate is not only easy… but the aromatic spices fill your home and get you even more into the festive spirit.

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Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp black peppercorns

  • 35 whole cardamom pods

  • 25 whole cloves

  • 1/2 tsp fennel seeds

  • 3 cinnamon sticks

  • 6 tbsp loose leaf black tea

  • 6 cups water

  • 1 tsp vanilla

  • 6 tbsp honey

  • 6 inches fresh ginger- rough chopped

Method

  1. Toast spices: Heat a small saucepan to medium heat. (You can also use a spice toaster like I have here- I got mine from an Indian foods store and I love it). Add the cinnamon and cardamom seeds first, toast for a minute. Then add cloves and peppercorn. Toast until the spices become aromatic. 3-5 mins. Stir and shake the pan very often to prevent burning.

  2. Remove spices from heat and add to a mortal and pestle. (Something I also got from the Indian store) If you don’t have one, use the back of your knife to crush them).

  3. Add spices to the pan again. Add the fennel this time. Toast for another minute or two. Again, shaking so they do not burn.

  4. Transfer herbs to a saucepan. Add water and ginger. Bring to a boil.

  5. Turn off heat and add loose leaf tea, vanilla, and honey.

  6. Allow to sit for an hour.

  7. Strain into mason jars and store in the fridge for up to two weeks.

  8. To make a latte, heat ¾ cup of the concentrate. Add ½ cup warmed and frothed milk.


Enjoy! (You can also enjoy it iced!)


herbs

herbs

fennel seeds

fennel seeds

toast the spices

toast the spices

Toast spices: Heat a small saucepan to medium heat. (You can also use a spice toaster like I have here- I got mine from an Indian foods store and I love it). Add the cinnamon and cardamom seeds first, toast for a minute. Then add cloves and peppercorn. Toast until the spices become aromatic. 3-5 mins. Stir and shake the pan very often to prevent burning.

Remove spices from heat and add to a mortal and pestle. (Something I also got from the Indian store) If you don’t have one, use the back of your knife to crush them).

Add spices to the pan again. Add the fennel this time. Toast for another minute or two. Again, shaking so they do not burn.

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Transfer herbs to a saucepan. Add water and ginger. Bring to a boil.

Turn off heat and add loose leaf tea, vanilla, and honey.

Allow to sit for an hour.

Strain into mason jars and store in the fridge for up to two weeks.

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