Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Simmering Kitchen Spice

I often enjoy simmering a pot of spices on the stove to give the house a pleasant, spicy, and homey scent. This 'concoction' usually includes a couple of cinnamon sticks, whole cloves, leftover orange peels and sometimes a bay leaf. I fill the pot with water and let it simmer.

The other day, I was poking around again on A Year Of Crockpotting. How I love this site! I was reading through her 'fun stuff' category, which is basically non-edibles. I came across this post about using the mini-crockpot as a room deodorizer or an air freshener.

Well, with one dog and two small childcare kids, this house needs plenty of deodorizing. Add to the fact that the windows in our rental are painted shut, this poor house can smell pretty stale pretty fast!

I noticed that the air freshener recipe was similar to the one I usually simmer on the stove. So I got out my $1 yard sale Little Dipper and got her going!

I added a drop of eucalyptus essential oil to the mixture of orange peels, cinnamon sticks, cloves and water. It worked and made the house smell great! I like that I can move the crockpot around throughout the house instead of having it just in the kitchen like the pot on the stove. I also noticed that the water doesn't evaporate as quickly as it does on the stove.

Whenever we eat oranges, I save the peelings in a freezer bag to use for potpourri. Apple cores and peelings make a nice scent as well. This is a frugal way to use up something that you would normally throw out.And makes your house smell awesome!

A word of caution: Whether you choose the stovetop or crockpot version for a simmering potpourri, be sure that you keep an eye on it and add water as needed. You do not want the pot to go dry and the spices to burn. Also, be sure to turn the stove off/unplug the crock if leaving the house.

**Thanks to Amy for hosting Kitchen Tip Tuesdays today!


Sherry said...

I bet this smells delicious! Thanks for the recipe! :D

Stephanie said...

I have one of those too. I also have 3 kids and two dogs, so we usually need a little deodorizing here as well!

gail said...

that's a great idea to save orange peels and put them in the freezer. i'll have to try that.

Amy said...

*gasp* I have one of those little crockpots and completely forgot about using it this way! Thank you!