When we were creating our Skin and Hair Care products we wanted fragrances that represented what we use at the B&B on a daily basis. There are three we use most and most often.
Mint Rosemary Lemon Verbena
We grow them, we dry them, we cook with them, we use them to infuse drinking water and infuse bed sheets. We use subtle fragrances in a huge variety of ways. We like the different combinations of these three herbs and we also like all three of them together.
Besides the herbs in our Skin and Hair Care products we use Neroli. Neroli is a fragrance that is made up of patchouli, rosemary and other herbs. It adds a very subtle floral fragrance that enhances the herbal elements.
One aspect we love is that our local Skin and Hair Care product maker uses no preservatives and no wax; all organic.
We began to also sell the Skin and Hair Care products that we use at our B&B as “TAKE AWAYS” so that you, our guests, can enjoy them not only while you stay with us, but also back at home, on the rest of your vacation, or to give as gifts to others. Sharing is so much better than just trying to describe a great fragrance or sensation, isn’t it.
We offer two different sizes of bath salts.
And to top it all off, a smooth lotion
that is devine…. Enjoy!
So just as an example, here are a few of the benefits of just one herb we use; mint.
Skin is benefited by mint as an antiseptic, a soother, and as an anti-itch remedy for things like bug bites and irritations. The cooling sensation of mint helps reduce irritations and therefore our desire to “scratch the itch”. Mint’s anti-inflammitory properties can bring down swelling. BUT don’t ever use mint around the eyes and if you use mint in the form of pure essential oil it is best to dilute this with another mild form of oil like almond oil.
Mint has benefits for digestion and is also a palate cleanser. Mint soothes the stomach (mint tea), the aroma activates the salivary glands in our mouth and helps our digestive enzymes get busy. So you can see why mint is a great herb to infuse in drinking water.
Mint also helps with fatigue and headache relief because it’s a natural stimulant and can help when feeling sluggish, anxious, depressed, exhausted,… Simply smelling mint can help charge your tired battery and boost brain function back to your normal level. No, mint won’t make you a genius. Sorry. Maybe that’s why there are so many chewing gums in mint flavors? Get us perked back up and running again.
Mint can also inhibit the release of histamines that can cause allergies, as well as clear some congestions (nose, throat, lungs, etc).
You can look forward to other fragrances in the near future and more information on the benefits of the complementary herbs we use in our lovely products!
When you visit Dungenss Barn House B&B there is so much to see and do in the area, but …. There is a lot to see right at the B&B. Clare and Su have so many interesting antique and repurposed pieces of furniture. But what is a favorite with so many are the little treasures of art scattered around the Barn House. Some have interesting stories, some are just too darling to NOT have, and still others probably have a story but it’s too long for this blog. You can always ask us about what you see when you are staying with us.
Here’s a sampling. Beginning with a new arrival to honor our most recent adventure of raising chickens / eggs. This is our chicken mascot.
A lovely 3-demential art piece named Sea Goddess is located upstairs in the Great Room near the fireplace. Clare is the artist and it is one of those pieces of art that you really must see up close to appreciate all of the detail involved.
One of the wonderful things about this B&B for many guests is the waterfront location. The sea is a calming, soothing place. You can hear it rolling in and out; you can visit it via our beach access. So it’s appropriate that there be several forms of art honoring the sea. One is ceramic and sits upon the fireplace mantel in the Dungeness Suite.
Another form of art is the written word and on the very same mantel as the ceramic above you will find one of our favorite story books, “Gift from the Sea” by Anne Morrow Lindbergh.
And because it’s always good to be looking toward to ‘what’s next’, we had to hang this vintage, re-purposed “cow jumping over the moon” (altho it’s moon has long since been missing) that was a gift from a friend. She knows that one, or both of us, has a dream of someday adding a miniature cow to our Two Crows Farm family. The detail in this cow painting is amazing. She is looking at you as you enter the kitchen where the amazing breakfasts are created. She knows she’s headed in the right direction!
Not all Lavender is created equal. Meaning that not all Lavender can be used in foods and beverages. For our B&B-shared recipes please be sure to use Culinary Lavender. There are a few different Lavenders that will work but my most successful foods and beverages have come from using Royal Velvet or Hidcote Blue. I like Culinary Lavender so much that I always have at least one plant in my yard, from which I can harvest fresh buds for in-season cooking and baking THEN utilize the remaining Lavender buds to dry for off-season divine food creations. Culinary Lavender has great flavor plus it holds it’s bright color.
Lavender doesn’t have to be in rows, on mounds, or just at lavender farms. I love placing my Culinary Lavender IN my mixed flower beds, as boarders, and surround it (but not too closely) with annuals, perennials, and evergreen plants (Sarcococca). In the photo above I’ve created a foundational carpet of bright green and yellow with Creeping Jenny. Off to the sides of the Hidcot Blue Lavender I’ve installed a variety of different colored ornamental grasses; some spiked (Japanese Blood Grass on right) and some flowing and draping (on left). I love pops of white and yellow (Fever Few, short and tall poppies) in beds where I have planted dark and rich colors like those of the Lavender plants and my other blue/purple plantings (dwarf iris, Walkers Low cat mint, Veronica, Blue Panda, Pansies, etc). If well planned, those things surrounding your Culinary Lavender will be in their glory about a month before your Lavender. Then those plants nearest your Lavender can be cut back to allow room for your lavender to expand in June and July. Then after cutting your bounty of Culinary Lavender in July there will be room for some of the other plants to expand again and get closer to the neatly mounded Lavender plant that is finished until next year.
Enjoy your yard and try some Culinary Lavender soon.
If you prefer, purchase pre-packaged Culinary Lavender at any of the Lavender farms or stores in Sequim or online.
It is all wrapped up in a little
Dungeness Barn House B&B bag,
but it’s what’s inside that matters most. YUM!
It is a VARIETY for YOUR TAKE AWAYs !
I love to use Rainbow Rub when making our Breakfast Avacodo Stack. I will share that recipe in a later blog. It includes sauteed vegetable that I season with this rub. I also use it with smoked salmon.
Is there anything better on Salmon than Lemon and Dill? Rhetorical question, but YES! Add in some herbs like Parsley and Chives, and more Lemon!
Since Fennel is one of my favorite flavors and scents, I love this one. And how can Fennel be made even better? By adding Garlic of course!!! Isn’t everything better with Garlic; another rhetorical question. A great blend to utilize on everything from fish to veggies. And just enough Lavender to know it’s from Sequim.
Be sure to see our two recent recipe blogs for Pink Lavender Lemonade and Lavender Ice Cream.
I never cook an egg that I do not add just the smallest pinch of this. It is also great with anything you would add garlic to. There is just a touch of heat from the red pepper flakes. It is so mild you get the flavor without the burn.
Our famous Rosemary Roasted Potatoes which we serve for breakfast are slated with this heavenly blend. I also use a sprinkling on our fresh heirloom tomatoes from the greenhouse. Thinly sliced and topped with fresh chopped basil. Great way to start the morning.
This Black Lavender Pepper is great in an egg scamble. I love to use it to make an herb butter that brings any toast to a whole new level. It is also great on salmon and chicken.
TAKE AWAY a bag of herbs and spice!
Lavender Honey Ice Cream
Makes about 1 quart
2 cups whole milk
1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon cornstarch
3 tablespoons cream cheese, softened
1 ¼ cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon dried lavender
⅔ cups honey
⅛ cup corn syrup
¼ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon salt
Fill a large bowl with ice water. In a small bowl, mix 2 tablespoons of the milk with the cornstarch. In another large bowl, whisk the cream cheese until smooth. Set a fine mesh sieve over the bowl and set aside.
In a large saucepan, combine the remaining milk with the heavy cream, lavender, honey and corn syrup. Bring the milk mixture to a boil and cook over moderate heat until the sugar dissolves, about 4 minutes. Off the heat, gradually whisk in the cornstarch mixture. Return to a boil and cook over moderately high heat until the mixture is slightly thickened, about 1 minute.
Gradually pour the hot milk mixture (through the sieve) into the cream cheese and whisk until smooth. Whisk in the vanilla extract and salt. Set the bowl in the ice water bath and let stand, stirring occasionally, until cool, about 20 minutes.
Chill the mixture thoroughly (at least 4 hours or overnight). Once chilled, pour into an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Place plastic or parchment over ice cream (to prevent ice crystals) and freeze until firm, at least 4 hours
Sometimes it’s fun the also make your homemade lavender ice cream the color of the main ingredient. In this case, most recipes call for 7 drops of red and 7 drops of blue food colorings. Add these colors in to the cooling mixture before freezing in your ice cream maker.