12600 Pelican Beach Road, Merrifiled, MN (218) 851-1937
Food, Ranch Life, Treats

Flowers and Fruit Cupcakes?

Yep, I thought we were little nuts to try our hand and adding some weird ingredients to our cupcakes, but…it’s Easter and we wanted to have some fun doing things a little different.

Lavender is our daughter’s favorite herb and essential oil. Even her dog loves it. Plus she is wacko for cupcakes. It must be the police officer in her, but really her hand at cupcake making is adorable so it all made sense for her to try this out.

Lemons is something I have been adding to most of my sweet type recipes only because I love the freshness and pop of flavor. Cookies, pancakes, and cakes in general lemons are the secret ingredient for me. So I encouraged Kinzey to put a lemon her batter. I think you will find these little gems a special treat as well! ENJOY!!! We did!

AHHH, the fresh smell of squeezed lemon!

Ingredients:

Cupcakes:

  • 1 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. cream of tarter
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 4 lemons, squeezed and zested
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temp.
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 tsp. fresh vanilla (I make my own, recipe below)
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup squeezed lemon juice (save the remainder for lemonade)
  • FOR THE LAVENDER FROSTING
  • 3/4 cup of unsalted butter, room temp
  • 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/3 cup softened cream cheese
  • 1 tsp. lavender herb, or 1 drop of lavender essential oil
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 tsp. of milk (only if needed)
  • 1 drop of purple food coloring
  • some lavender herb for garnish
  • NOTE: We had to add an additional tsp. of lavender to get more taste. Test your frosting to see if it is your desired taste.

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

  • Whisk the first 4 ingredients in a small bowl.
  • squeeze lemons and set aside as well as zest from each lemon
  • In your electric mixer, beat the butter until creamy. Add sugar and beat until creamy. Scrap sides and increase speed for 2-3 minutes.
  • Beat in eggs and egg whites then add vanilla and half of lemon zest.
  • Slowly add half of dry ingredients mix well until combined.
  • Add milk and lemon juice.
  • Add remaining dry ingredients and beat well.
  • With an ice cream scooper scoop the batter into liners filling 3/4 of the way full. Bake for 16-18 minutes until the tops are set.
  • Let cool completely.
  • FOR THE FROSTING:
  • Add butter to your bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix until creamy.
  • With the mixer at low speed slowly add the powdered sugar and lavender. Increase the speed of scraping the sides of the bowl.
  • Beat until fluffy. Add vanilla.
  • If the frosting is too thick add your milk. If too runny add more powdered sugar only a teaspoon at a time. When it is right for you to add your food coloring and mix. Frost your cupcakes and sprinkle on some lavender love for a garnish!

Make your own vanilla extract

I really steer away from extracts as you can take any of the flavors and make your own. All you need with the vanilla is 2 vanilla beans in a pint-size mason jar and fill it up with brandy. I use the cheap kind. Let is soak up and shake often for 4-6 weeks. It is to die for!

Let us know what you think and if you added any new flavors!

God bless,

Love deeper, talk sweeter,

Lee

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Food, Healthy Eating, Living Naturally, Peace, Ranch Life
Do you suffer from anxiety? Or even just get anxious when something important is coming up on your calendar? I have bouts of this…nothing serious but when I need a dose of calming, I will take a soak in a lavender bath with chamomile tea or if it’s during the day I will make a tall pitcher lavender lemonade. This is just downright refreshing and incredibly delightful! Plus…it helps you calm right down. Lavender Lemonade Try a batch and see if it works for you. If it does, make sure to comment below. I love hearing how the recipes work in the lives of the readers. Ingredients: 1 cup of raw honey 5 cups of pure water 1/4 cup dried culinary lavender 6  organic lemons, squeezed Lavender sprigs for garnish Elderberry syrup for color Directions: 1. Pour half of the water in a pan and bring to a boil. Remove from heat. 2.  Add honey and dried lavender and let steep for 20 minutes. 3.  Strain mixture and pour into a large container. 4.  Add the lemon juice and remaining water and stir. Add a little Elderberry syrup to make it purple plus add a powerful immune boost! 5. Refrigerate Lavender Lemondade For an anxiety soak bath: (highlights are affiliate links which help our ministry) Mix 5-6 drops of lavender essential oil into your bath of hot water. Add your sea salt  (affiliate link) and swirl into your bath. Add apple cider vinegar (affiliate link) for a detox bath. UTI For during the day: Diffuse 10-12 drops of Lavender essential oil into the air during your workday for a natural stress reliever. Lavender is my go-to essential oil for insect bites and burns as well. Enjoy every sip, soak, and aroma with this wonderful herb! Love deeper, talk sweeter, Lee
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Food, Jarrin

Six Best Cocoa Recipes

I enjoy a nice cup of hot cocoa and recently I came upon some fun recipes. Six great blends I use all the time, plus I can package up and easily give as gifts. It is always nice to give a gift of variety. Just makes it kinda special. Each one of these you can add more or less of any ingredient depending on your taste buds.
Adding a bit of the herb on top of your whipping cream gives your mug a touch of love too if you are serving to a guest.
I hope you find them fun to make! SOOO yummy! Starwest is amazing and offers FREE shipping which I have on the links.  The cute sweater mugs you can find here.
Every time you order from this blog link you are helping our ministry.
Thank you!

 

The Base: 3…2…1

3 Cups confection sugar (powdered…I have to say that because I get these mixed up sometimes…HA!)

2 Cups Powdered Milk

1 Cup Cacao Powder Organic

Sift sugar and cacao powder then add powdered milk

Place in sealed mason jar and Label
TIP: If you like malted milk flavoring you could add malt powder too

Now that you have the base you can play with these fun recipes! The syrups I like to have on hand for a splash of sweetness but also like to add it to my teas instead of honey. They do add to hot chocolate bars too!

Mexican Hot Chocolate

This has been a popular one. You can get the KICK without the cayenne, but cayenne is good for you so why not!

1 cup of base hot cocoa

1 tsp of fresh cinnamon powder

1/2 grated Organic Nutmeg

pinch of cayenne pepper (optional)

1/8 tsp sea salt

Lovely Lavender

1 cup of base

2 Tablespoons Lavender flowers Crushed in Mortar Pestle 

1/8 tsp sea salt

Red Rose

1 Cup of base

2 tbsp Rose Pedals, crushed with your Mortar Pestle

1/8 tsp salt (optional)
Rose Syrup for sweeter taste

Pumpkin Spice (of Course)

1 cup of base

1 tsp Organic cinnamon powder

½ tsp Organic Clove Powder

Grated nutmeg…1 tsp

Mix

Sweet and Salty

1 cup base

½ cup crushed pretzels
Caramel Syrup

Mix

With each of these, I placed in a small jar and topped with some of the spice. Just for fun!

Each cup of hot chocolate I put 2 heaping teaspoons into my mug. You can surely add more of anything to your liking!

The best part is to add whipping cream really a MUST!!!!

Enjoy!

Let me know what you think or what variety you came up with!
Love to hear what you created!
God’s blessings and keeping cozy warm,
Love deeper, talk sweeter,
Lee


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Health, Ranch Life, Thyme Out
I went to do some harvesting today and found those little brown bugs on my herbs! So I googled away some ideas and this one so far has been the best one. I will keep you posted if it truly works! I also added some Peppermint essential oil into the “tea” to board off deer as well. Remember to keep it natural to protect you, your animals, and the environment. NO harsh chemicals are used on our ranch! The picture below is Mullein another wonderful herb. The flower, leaves, and root have all been used for inflammation including diarrhea, cough, and asthma. It is also wonderful for helping with bruising, burns, and gout. It can be ingested, applied topically, and even smoked! I like making it into a tea as well as a tincture. Strong smelling plants, herbs, and spices deter insects and other pests.
  • Tea Spray for Bugs:
  • Mix together plants like garlic, rhubarb, mint, onions, cayenne, and ginger.
  • Cut them up into large pieces and place them in a pot or saucepan.
  • Cover them with water and boil.
  • Turn off the heat and allow the “tea” to sit overnight.
  • Strain the liquid away and pour it into an amber spray bottle.
  • (I added about 1/4 cup of Castile soap to make it stick)
  • Add about 15 or so drops of Peppermint essential oil to your spray.
  • Create a caffeine mixture, if you are having a problem with aphids.(brown bugs)
  • Mix 1 cup (240 ml) of yarrow, lavender and/or catnip with 2 tbs. (10 g) of used coffee grounds and 2 cups (473 ml) of water. Allow the mixture to sit overnight.
  • Strain the liquid and pour into a spray bottle. Only keeps for a week or two.
  • What is really awesome is the Yarrow and Lavender I can get right out of my herb garden! I just love that I have grown the herb myself! Yarrow grows all over our ranch naturally, so we have an abundant amount to use. That was of course before I knew what yarrow was.
Yarrow is an amazing herb! I had a student who was working with Bokoda our horse, and he cut his nose. I asked her if she remembered what herb would help his wound. She instantly remembered YARROW! She ran to the garden and picked the top flower and gently placed it on his bleeding nose. She held it there talking so sweet to him and soon the bleeding stopped. She was so excited and so was I as teaching how herbs can heal as the Lord intended. Read more here you will be amazed too so start picking and drying your herb for tea, soups, salads, and even nice herbal oil to pour over salads. Remember today to Love deeper, talk sweeter, Lee UPDATE: For 2018 we are a go! This worked wonderfully!!!!  
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