A general talk which has snippets of valuable knowledge and inspiration for everyone.It looks at herbs in a busy, everyday life, quickly gathered from your herb plot or tubs and used to enhance the flavours and nutritious goodness of recipes in the kitchen. Simple home remedies in teas, footbaths, oils for external application and use of some essential oils will be explored. Fragrant recipes take little time to make and can transform the atmosphere of a room, several will be recommended. Whether illustrated with slides in winter or fresh herbs in summer, this talk gives a gentle introduction to herb use from a modest herb garden.
Patricularly popular with winemaking circles, this talk takes a light-hearted look at wine-making itself, and investigates those herbs most suitable to provide delicious tipples. From coltsfoot, violets and other spring herbs, the winemaking year is followed through to spiced blackberry, haw wine and elderberry port in autumn. After the close of the monasteries, some Elizabethan housewives fortunate enough to have stillrooms, began distilling liqueurs as medicinal remedies. Christina has researched old recipes and experimented with her own, made by steeping herbs and spices in brandy, vodka or rum. The use of these excellent home liqueurs and wines in cookery is an optional extra to a talk full of anecdotes drawn from years of winemaking experience.
A very popular seasonal talk or demonstration, exploring both the herbal nature of familiar Christmas evergreens, such as holly, ivy and mistletoe and the decorative possibilities of rosemary, bay, juniper and a range of herb seedheads. Crackers, small decorations for the tree, a soft, cuddly snowman pomander beads strung to hang from wreaths or swags, all add fragrance to the atmosphere. Superstitions connected with Christmas decorations and references to the history of Christmas add lively anecdotes. The role of herb roots, seeds and petals in making sweets, liqueurs, seasonings and stuffings, mincemeat and party fare, is mouth-watering. Gifts are suggested using a wide variety of herb materials from fragrant petals and leaves to seeds, stem fibres and dye pigments. There is everything from packets of home gathered seeds decorated with pressed herb flowers to elderberry ink and dyed paper, an aromatic tea cosy to hand cream and soap, or a hamper of edible goodies to a dyed and printed silk blouse.
A host of inspirations.