Wednesday, July 19, 2017

BEAUTY BITES: INFUSED SWEETENERS


B E A U T Y   B I T E S  |  I N F U S E D   S W E E T E N E R S
On how to heighten the medicinal effects of herbs & deepen the flavour of sweeteners . . .


 I was first inspired to infuse sweeteners, mainly raw honey, by the Ayurvedic Medicine staple chyawanprash, a nutritive jam infused containing amalaki fruits and a multitude of herbs, ghee, sesame oil, and honey. The base is used as anupans or carriers for these herbs and fruits as the honey, ghee, and sesame oil function as yogavahis or catalytic agents that deliver the benefits deeper into the cells.


Despite its benefits ranging from the high concentration of anti-aging vitamin C in the amalaki to building digestive fire, chyawanprash or prash does contain sugar to preserve the potency of amalaki. Sesame oil is also a seed oil that is often high-processed, is often rancid from its light- and temperature-sensitive nature, and inflammatory due to its high (forty-one percent omega-6 (Polyunsaturated) fat content. Although it doesn't contain the traditional Ayurvedic herbs, Sun Potion's prash is a great refined sugar- and -oil free option.


The infused sweetener recipes below skip the oils and call for the infusion of various different herbs and flowers. You can use them to sweeten teas, baked goods, salads, marinade, or even serve it alongside charcuterie or cheese platters. Add the brain-fueling and satisfying smear of ghee whenever you'd like! They will function as vehicles to deliver stronger, medicinal doses of the herbs they contain, such as sore throat relief with sage.




I N G R E D I E N T S
8 ounces of sweetener, preferably raw or Manuka Honey
2 tablespoons of dried herbs of your choice, avoid fresh herbs as they can cause growth of Clostridium botulinum spores
Spices of your choice, such as vanilla powder, cinnamon stick, allspice, and nutmeg


D I R E C T I O N S
I. First, make sure that your container is sterile. You can do this by boiling the container and lid then scooping it out gently with tongs.

II. You can use a single herb or a combination, but I suggest using no more than three to not create an overwhelming flavour or dense sweetener. Divide the amount of herbs accordingly. So if you’re using two herbs, place a tablespoon of each into your sweetener.
III. Simply place your herbs along with spices if preferred at the bottom of your clean containers and stir with a wooden spoon or chopstick as metal spoons can scratch the container.
IV. Place the lid on and let it infuse for a week or two weeks for a more intense flavour.
V. When ready, strain the jar into a new, clean container. It can be stored indefinitely.


S U G G E S T I O N S
Vanilla-Cardamon 1 vanilla bean, halved and a tablespoon of crushed cardamom pods Vanilla-Orange 2 slices of dehydrated orange and 1 vanilla bean, halved Sage & Lemon Balm a tablespoon each of crushed dried sage and dried lemon balm leaves Rose 2 tablespoons of dried rose petals Espresso two tablespoons of dark-roasted coffee beans