Throughout the winter I love our house to smell good. Subtle orange or apple, clove and cinnamon wafting through the rooms evokes a warm cozy feel.
Some people love to use candles, melting wax and plug-in room fresheners. Not only do I get sick from perfumed things like that, but have you read any of those articles out there stating that the perfumes and soot released from candles and room fresheners can actually cause unhealthy pollution in your own house! Yikes!
Truth be told, after being perfume and fragrance free in our house for so many years, those chemical scents smell pretty horrible to me anyway. But truely natural, though more subtle scents can be lovely.
So here is my super simple answer to making my own natural simmering potpourri. This may seem like most of the ingredients are just a few kitchen scraps, (and they mostly are, LOL!) but trust me, it smells a lot better than the compost we’ve been making all summer!
One of my favorite recipes I’ve made for simmering potpourri is simply some orange peels, a couple sticks of cinnamon and a few whole cloves. That’s it!
But you can have fun being creative and adding different ingredients to this natural simmering potpourri to create your own special recipe. I was going to try a few pine needles and cranberries around Christmas time and see how that worked.
Once I add the peels from one or two oranges and spices into the electric crock, I then add water up to the top and plug it in.
I love this little electric crock. The crock is heavy enameled cast iron, (similar to Le Creuset pans). The little enameled pot sits on the separate warming pad. This small electric crock pot is sold to use for a small slow cooker, but works amazingly for this simmering potpourri use too!
It comes with a lid, (if I want to actually use it for cooking) obviously, for the natural simmering potpourri I don’t cover it.
The spicy scented steam is slowly released into the room. Adding a little extra moisture in the air is welcome during the dry winter months now too.
After about 5 or 6 hours, this is how much water is down from the top with it on high. I usually add more water to it once during the day and turn it off at bedtime. On high, it doesn’t even quite simmer… heats up just enough. It is hot though so keep way from children.
For this week’s recipe, (yes, it can last a week, or more!) I had a half of a lemon, peels from a couple apples, cinnamon and whole clove. It is amazing how much scent comes from just a few simple ingredients. I have noticed that each day the scent seems to be stronger and stronger as the week goes on.
If you’re interested in DIY natural potpourri things, you may be interested in this post I wrote on DIY best smelling sachets too.
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Here are some more posts I’ve written featuring simple DIY…