12600 Pelican Beach Road, Merrifiled, MN (218) 851-1937
Food, Healthy Eating
Who doesn’t like cranberries this time of year? I am SO cranberry crazy right now…mostly because I love the taste and color, but also they are REALLY good for you!

Below is a wonderful simple homemade cranberry sauce (NOT the canned jelly kind I assure you) that you can make ahead of time. I love that idea! Keep refrigerated until your ready to serve. 

 


Ingredients:

3/4 cup of Orange Juice
1/2-3/4 cup of honey…it looses sweetness in the refrigerator so I go to the higher amount
12 oz of whole cranberries
Orange zest I used a whole orange

Directions:

Simmer orange juice, honey and zest bringing to a boil for 5 minutes. Stir in cranberries continuing to cook for 15 minutes. They will burst and the mixture will get thick. Spoon into your serving dish and refrigerate for at least 8 hours. I do this the night before. Add some orange zest on top before you bring to your holiday table. Presentation will be delightful!


Next fav…yep not nutritious at all! BUT REALLY YUMMY! Famous marshmallow cranberry salad! Cranberry Crazy #2…

Cranberry Crazy
Ingredients:
3 cups frozen organic cranberries thawed and chopped (organic makes me feel better we have local farmers too which makes it awesome)
1  1/2 cup pineapple frozen or fresh
1 drop Organic Orange essential oil (adds amazing taste)
2 cups mini marshmallows
1 apple chopped
1 lemon squeezed 
2/3 cup sugar
1/8 tsp salt
2 cups of heavy whipping cream ( I like as fresh as possible so I stay away from cool whip)
1/4 cup of walnuts or pecans, chopped
lemon zest

Directions:
In large bowl mix first 4 ingredients. Add your lemon juice. Add sugar, salt. Give a good stir and cover and refrigerate overnight. Just before serving, whip up your cream and fold into your mixture. Add nuts and stir. Top with zest before serving. 

Lastly is a sweet beverage which is healthy and festive! I love my orange flavors with cranberries and I add it into my recipes when I can. 
Cranberry Crazy #3

Cranberry Crazy

I love using martini glasses even though we don’t use them for that purpose. It is fun drinking from the glass so making this recipe is simple but is individually made.

Using a shaker full of ice add:
1/4 cup of Elderberry syrup
1/2 cup Cranberry juice 
1 drop of orange essential oil
Fill remaining space with Ginger Ale
Shake well and pour into your favorite glass. 
(you can sugar the rim of the glass with cranberry sugar by taking a bit of the cranberry juice to 1/4 cup of sugar, mix and place on a plate. Dip your favorite glass into a water than into the plate of sugar)

Well there you have it! Your festive cranberry crazy day has a head start. 

Enjoy making the most of your Thanksgiving by remembering all you are thankful for and raising your glasses in praise for the ONE who gave HIS all!

God bless you and may this season bring you peace and love in Jesus Christ!
Love deeper, talk sweeter,
Lee







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Health, Living Naturally, Ranch Life

Making your own tea and blending herbs can be confusing as well as intimidating. Personally, it took me a few months to feel confident but over time…it all really doesn’t matter -just so it tastes good to you.

Yep that’s right…just don’t worry about it! Tea blending is all  in what you love, taste, and feel. That’s it!

DIY tea Blending

Begin by having some kind of journal so you can write down the tea blends you tried.  You can make a note or use faces…I love  using those emoji faces!

 

Kinds of Teas, Herbs, Spices, and Essential Oils (just a few of the most popular and flavorful)

Base Tea: Black, White, Roboos,  Green,  Oolong, Fruit,  Macha

 

Add a dash: Ginger, Orange Peel,  Lemon Peel,  Mints, Cinnamon, Clove, Cyanine

 

Aroma delight: One drop of essential oil like orange, peppermint, spearmint, cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, lemon

 

Flower Herbs: elder flower, hibiscus, rose petal, rose hips, lavender

 

Medicinal Herbs: (Top herbs to have on hand especially cold and flu season)  Ginger, Elderberry, garlic, marshmallow, elder flower, echinachia,  goldenseal, yarrow, dandelion leaf

DIY Tea Blending

 

Here are a few tips that I hope you will find helpful in your journey of tea blending. Once you find the group of herbs you like, make a label naming your new tea and put the ingredients of herbs on the label. Naming the most used herb first.

 

Tip 1:

Fighting an illness:Taste-of-Herbs-Flavor-Wheel-Packet

  1. Look at the link above even print it out to help you.
  2. Find how your feeling or what you’re trying to fight.
  3. Pick 3 herbs based on the chart. Blend only a cup of the herbs. Use 1 tsp for the herb that is needed to be the strongest. The other 2 use 1/2 tsp, and if one is a mint use only a sprinkle.

Once you have a blend you like, make up a bigger mason jar of the blend, adding your ingreients and name it, like cold/flu, cough, tummy, headache….

Tip 2.

 Base tea leaves:
  Using one of these is making a caffeinated  tea. Yet, it may be a wonderful blend to play with.

When you go to order the tea leaves, Starwest is wonderful at giving you the info behind each one as well as the flavor.  A tip in itself! Especially with these based teas.

Once you have had a cup of the base tea add an herb you like- for example:  green tea with rose petals, rose hips, ginger and orange. Again only make a small batch, giving you one to three cups so if you don’t like it you won’t waste your herbs.
(If I make a cup I that is too pungent I will put it in my dinner some how…like when I am simmering meat I add the tea to water…I feel better when I don’t waste!)

Tip 3.

  1. Blend 2 herbs. Pick a flower or medicinal herb. Pick one dash and an aroma delight.
  2. Only make one cup of tea using a 2 tsp of your choice herb and ½ tsp of your dash, brew and you’re ready to drink your cup add your drop of essential oil.

If you like this blend, write it down in your tea blend booklet.
DIY Blending Tea

 Tip 4: (click on the Starwest link to get the herbs and spices you need even tea bags)
Top herbs to have on hand all the time would be ones I love yes but also to help fight an
on coming cold or flu.

  1. Elderberry both berry and the flower (I make a syrup to keep in the refridge all year round!)
  2. Golden Seal, Yarrow, and Echinacea, (not the best tasting but sure powerful in helping aid in fevers, coughs, and upper respiratory)
  3. Ginger and orange peel, and rose hips (gotta have flavor…these are not only medicinal but packed with flavor)
  4. The above spices can be substituted for essential oils only one drop per cup. peppermint, ginger, clove bud, lemon, or orange

Lastly, when brewing your tea make sure to brew for at least 10-15 minutes. I know it may seem like a long wait, but it is important to let the herb steam through. Also cover your mixed herb while it is brewing. Most tea strainers (Starwest has a wonderful one) do not have a cover so I use a lid of a mason jar.


Enjoy blending and experimenting with your teas and spices. The joy of blending is feeling free enough to stretch your imagination and enjoy the smell and taste of your OWN blend.


If you want to give your new tea as a gift…I love putting them in a mason jar and I made cute quilted bag but you can gift wrap yours with a tea strainer attached. Another opportunity to be creative!
DIY Tea BlendingDIY Tea Blending


Happy blending,
Love deeper, talk sweeter,
Lee
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