Friday, May 01, 2009

Violet Syrup, Et Cetera

For many years now, long before The Essential Herbal existed, we've made violet syrup. It isn't medicinal - unless you consider the incredible luxury of it, or the whimsy, or the pleasure. Yes, now that I think about it, it is very medicinal. This batch was made on the eve of May Day, so it is some of the most special ever.
In any case it was always one of Molly's favorite things to help with. At three years of age, she could feel pretty important and accomplished. The less stem, the better, and everyone knows little kids just pop off the flower with no stem. Yesterday she wasn't home, but I heard the weed-whacker in the distance and decided it was time to go pick violets.
What follows is the results and the directions. I walked down the path with a bucket, picking all the way. The different colors of blossoms blended together to make a wonderful bouquet, and sticking my schnoz in the bucket, I was able to inhale the fleeting sweet treat that is the scent of the violet flower. Note the blues above. The recent record hot weather seems to have affected the flowers and their color.A quart jar was about 3/4 packed with the flowers when the picking was done. A hamstring muscle was screaming, but don't those flowers look pretty? Meanwhile, about a quart of water was set to boil.
The boiling water is poured over the flowers in the jar. Notice that immediately the water turns a shade of aqua blue? That color deepens to a cobalt blue as time passes. This color is very odd. Violets usually dye the water some shade of pink, lavender, mauve, or purple. This blue is why I think the temperatures have changed the quality of the color. Here we strain the flowers from the water. This water is then set to boil with about 2 cups of sugar. It was 3 cups of the violet water to 2 cups of sugar. It is allowed to come to a rolling boil. If there is any scum, it should be removed. There was none with this batch.

The syrup was poured into two pint jars. Each jar got a single drop of rose geranium essential oil. The color of the syrup was inky kelly green last night. It needed to settle down!

This morning I strained the syrup again - for good measure. This cheerful color is how it turned out. Nature... ya gotta love her! Doesn't that look like something that fairies might pour on their crepes? NOTE: Later I added some lemon juice and it turned pale PURPLE.
Batch made 4/16/11
If you want to try violet jelly, check out Prairieland Herb's blog!
http://prairielandherbs.com/violetjelly.htm

So then, we were talking about violet candies on the group the other day, and so I got these in for the market and shows - gum and mints (available here).They will make a lovely display with the syrup - AND our raspberry violet soap and salt glo! Our little ode to Spring :-).

10 comments:

SunRose112@aol.com said...

OMG !!! what beautiful color .!!!
that is amazing thank you for sharing this pictorial journey.!!

Oh and the Scented Gum .. where do you find it ..?? !!! talk about memory lane.! Thanks Tina .. for all your wisdom and the joy you bring.!Roe SunRoseAromatics

Lisa said...

I just made dandelion syrup for the first time this week. I think violet syrup will be our next project.

Patricia said...

Love the color your violet syrup came. Definitely food for the faeries! I remember those candies from many years ago, where on earth did you find that?
Pat
Patricia Rose-A Potpourri of
Fabric, Fragrance and Findings
www.patriciarose-apotpourri.com
www.patriciarose-apotpourriof.blogspot.com

Tina Sams said...

oh, you know.. I have my sources :-).

The Mom said...

What a wonderful addition to the gift list. I'll be gathering those violets this afternoon and doing the same. Yummy. Someone "might" get a pint as a gift, or it might just be for "me".

Daisy Soap Girl said...

What incredible things I've learned from you.

Janiece said...

It's lovely! If I was at your market I'd have to have gum, candy, AND syrup~!

Tina Sams said...

You know what? A lot of them DO have it now! That was kind of a surprise - but a good one.

Laura said...

Mmmm mmmm! Makes my senses swirl with delight! Good "medicine" indeed! :)

Victoria said...

Wow! What a gorgeous color! Thank you.

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