Bourbon Red Turkeys



Bourbon Red turkeys originated in Bourbon County, KY, probably a cross between the wild turkeys found in mountainous areas and white domestic turkeys. The American Standard of Perfection accepts Bourbon Co., KY as their home and indicated they descended from the wild yellow turkey. They found their way into the Ohio and then to other areas, and were admitted to the American Standard in 1910.

There are naturally a few contradictory accounts regarding the origins of this majestic bird. One school of thought says they were bred in Pennsylvania where it descended from the Tuscarora red and Buffs. That source says from Pennsylvania they were taken to Kentucky where the color was enhanced. With either story, the bird as we know it seems to have come from Kentucky.

Breeders claimed the bourbon reds were more disease-resistant than other breeds, some of which were susceptible to blackhead.

Reds have pin feathers that, “did not show as plainly as darker colored birds, being nearly the color of the skin”, and poults are larger when hatched and also more disease resistant. One breeder said the hens layed larger clutches of eggs, up to as many as 30, they were great rangers, always returning at night. “They are well feathered, and endure the cold winters without shelter. They make fine market birds, having plump, yellow-skinned carcasses…”. The breeder went on to say that if there was a plentiful supply of grasshoppers and other insects, berries, etc. they required no feeding at all. They do certainly enjoy a juicy grasshopper or cricket.

Bourbon reds were described in the Standard of Perfection as being “deep brownish-red” with the head being rich red changeable to bluish white”. The throat wattle is “rich red changeable to bluish white”. The wing bows are “deep brownish red; primaries and secondaries white.” The tail is white. Shanks and toes are reddish-pink. When the males drop their wings the white feathers stand out against the deep cinnamon color giving them a rather striking appearance.

The reds don’t mature as fast as the assembly-line white broad-breasted, so the breed probably wouldn’t be a good first choice if the goal is to get them to weight as fast as possible for market.

Those who appreciate the beauty and the personal characteristics of heritage breeds might look a little closer. A true heritage breed is defined as one that reproduces naturally and grows slowly feeding on its own in the outdoors. Mine meet those requirements although I do keep them in a movable enclosure to keep my girls from flying off to join their wild counterparts and to protect them from preditors. Their pen can easily be moved to allow them access to tender fresh clean grass.

Toms top out at about 23 lbs., hens at around 12, down somewhat from 100 years ago when the toms often reached 30 lbs. Reds are on a “watch” list meaning that while they aren’t common enough to become lost in the shuffle, they aren’t critically endangered either, and I like being able to keep this fine old breed going.

My turkeys like scratch feed, bugs, and greens or grass. They aren’t as fond of cracked corn as the scratch though I sometimes mix extra corn into the scratch. I’ve planted a patch of greens primarily for them, but I do hope to gather a few for myself as well. I add 1 to 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar to each gallon of water for them to promote good health through probiotics.

My tom is heavier than his ladies and doesn’t fly as well, but he can get himself hoisted onto the roosting pole in the enclosure at night. My plan is to replace him with a younger, perhaps more virile, fellow within the next year or two and retire the present laird after which he will have free run of the place to do as he will.

Sources: “The Country Life”. Vol. 23. Nov. 1912.
McGrew, Thomas Fletcher. “The Book of Poultry”. 1921.
“The American Standard of Perfection”. 1910.

A Little On Other Projects



GritBloggerButton (1)

Last week I started a blog for GRIT magazine called “Letters from Alabama” and I wanted to share that with my readers. Some of the content will be similar to TheHistoricFoodie, some will be different posts all together. “GRIT”(rural know how) and “Cappers” magazines appeal to an audience who aspire to be self-sufficient, productive, and keepers of the land. Each can be found online for more information.


Next week’s post on Letters from Alabama will explain where the name came from and why.


An article I wrote on saffron was published in this month’s “Early American Life” magazine. I learned a great deal researching that one and perhaps others will be interested in growing and using it.

Everyone have a great weekend. I appreciate your interest and enjoy the positive comments left from readers. – THF

Driving Hogs


The idea for today’s post came from the book, “Cracker Culture: Celtic Ways in the Old South”, by Grady McWhiney. In the chapter on herding, he discusses driving free-range hogs to market saying, “Throughout the antebellum period Southerners drove enormous herds of livestock over long distances to market. Thousands of swine went east, north, and south each year along established routes.” He went on to share numbers showing more hogs were herded between 1866 and 1880 than cattle.

In 1820, Winchester, Virginia passed an act to the effect that citizens within the town could not keep hogs and let them go at will because doing so tended to spoil the water for human consumption. The act, however, did not limit a non-resident from driving his hogs through the town in order to get them to market, to butcher them, or to drive them from one plantation to another. – March 1st, 1761.

Just what was it like herding hogs? “The hog is one of the most difficult and unsatisfactory animals to drive and particularly so if an effort is made to force the animal or animals in question. On the other hand, hogs are very easy animals to lead if they are trained to it, and the best way to train them is to get them in the habit of following a man with some feed, which feed they get after they have followed him a certain distance.” This is an excellent example of how a thing was not hard to accomplish when one knew how, but in later years when the knowledge was lost tended to seem very difficult.

How many head could be driven at a time? For the answer to that we look at an account from an old retired farmer in Missouri. He noted seeing 2,000 hogs pass through Columbia on the way to St. Louis. They were divided into, “lots of convenient size. The drovers had long whips which they cracked as they went along”. Cracking the whips was accepted, but striking the hogs with the whip was not as it bruised the meat.

The gentleman claimed that ten miles per day was about the most that could be covered and except for the man in charge the drovers walked along with the herd. The man on horseback was responsible for riding ahead to procure corn to feed the hogs when stopped for the night.

Indeed, farmers often profited from the sale of corn to the hog drovers along established routes. Some farmers planted large fields of corn for this purpose and rode several miles out to meet with the drovers to negotiate the price of said corn. “It is said that the soil of Teay’s valley [W. VA] was worn out by continued cultivation of corn to supply the demand of hog traffic”.

“It was generally the depth of winter during the hog-driving season”, and the drovers found lodgings at a tavern or a farmhouse, most having a room set aside for the use of such persons. When the rivers were frozen hard enough the hogs were marched across at other times they were ferried across.

“The present generation is little aware of the long distances which hogs used to travel during the thirties and forties of last century [1830-40]”, up to the use of the railroads. The railroads eliminated the need to drive large herds but did not bring about an instant end to hog driving because small farmers who could not afford to ship by rail had no choice but to continue to drive their hogs to market.

The books of a Kentucky man were examined and quoted in a book published in 1838 showing the number of animals that had passed his door headed South in 1835. There were 4,716 horses, 1,951 mules, 2,485 beeves, 2,887 shoats, 1,320 sheep, and 69,187 hogs.

As one would expect, the extreme heat and humidity of July and August was noted to make the process more difficult and sometimes the condition of hogs that had been herded some distance at that time of year suffered.

A Cincinnati paper contained an article on pork coming in for slaughter saying that farmers sometimes banded together, each having his own hogs intermingled in the numbers being driven to market, while others chose to sell their hogs to drovers who resold them upon reaching Cincinnati. The greatest danger in combining animals in this way was the spread of disease from sick animals.

Who was doing the driving? In short, just about anybody. Numerous sources depict boys and men of various stations taking the job of driving hogs in order to make wages. Horace Greely noted women doing hard work around farms including driving hogs to and from market. Even the military got into the act of driving hogs as evidenced by a letter from G. W. Randolph, Secretary of War, to General Marshall asking if his cavalry could be employed in driving hogs out of eastern Kentucky [Nov. 12, 1862).

With the introduction of refrigeration, driving hogs to a major market was no longer necessary as they could be processed in smaller numbers wherever needed. While Hollywood isn’t likely to depict a hog drive in a movie, I think we’ll all agree it was big business, as much so as herding cows. ©

Guilford, William Sumner. “California Hog Book”. 1915. San Francisco.
“Transactions of the Illinois State Agricultural Society”. 1870. Springfield.
Henning, William Waller. “The Statutes at Large”. 1820. Richmond.
Missouri Dept. of Agriculture. “Bulletin”. Vol. 20. Nov. 1920.
U.S. War Dept. “The War of the Rebellion”.
“The Cultivator”. May 1843. Albany, NY.
West Virginia Geological and Economic Survey”. “Fayette County”. Vol. 2. 1919.
“The Wool Grower and Magazine of Agriculture and Horticulture”. August 1851.

Pears: Preserved for Winter



The pears from my tree have been made into preserves to go on peanut butter sandwiches, ice cream, in oatmeal, or whatever other way I decide I want them. The recipe is pretty simple – 16 cups finely chopped ripe pears, 10 cups sugar, juice of 1 lemon or slices of ginger to taste, and 1 – 20 oz. can of crushed pineapple. Combine, bring to a boil, turn down the heat and simmer until it thickens. That should take about an hour.

First we pick

First we pick


The end result

The end result

Review of AT&T internet and home phone. THIS IS NOT A HISTORICAL POST.



My internet and home phone were installed July 3rd, today is July 29. The installer strung a cable across my property (on the ground, not on poles), across an adjacent farm road (on the surface of the road, not lifted over the road), and up the main road to a connection box promising to return within a maximum of 2 weeks to bury said cable. I knew when he left we’d seen the last of him and sure enough the cable is still across the farm road with tractors and farm equipment, pick-up trucks pulling heavy loads of cattle, etc. driving over this cable dozens of times a day, every day. I’m surprised this cable isn’t already cut on rocks and gravel and the next time it rains and I get nothing but static I may well find out that it is already worn through.

When I called customer service I immediately knew I was speaking with someone physically sitting at a desk outside the U.S. After trying twice to explain the situation and the customer service agent having no clue what the situation was, or why it was a problem, I asked to speak with someone who could speak English well enough to understand what I was saying. She summoned her supervisor, Chris, who was little better. I asked him where he was and his comment was they are in the Philippines. I have nothing against anyone from the Philippines, but there are two things very wrong with this scenario.

First, while able to speak rudimentary English, the agent was totally unable to comprehend what I was saying enough to understand the problem and that I wanted it remedied. It took me 20 minutes on the phone before her supervisor came in and finally understood the situation enough to put in a work order. I think both of them thought I was just fortunate to have internet and phone regardless of how shoddily it was installed whereas I am opposed to having heavy equipment driving on the cable to my devices dozens of times per day.

Second, when the unemployment rate in this country is at an all time high and the economy is completely in the toilet, why can’t AT&T (and other companies) employ Americans at home in the U.S. to man these customer service lines? Outsourcing these jobs is a direct affront to the American people who want to work for wages and support their families. AT&T – you do not deliver what you promise and if being scored between a low of 1 and a high of 10, right now you’d get about a 2 at best.

UPDATE 8-6-14. I received a call from a repairman this morning saying he was there to bury the cable. He wanted to tunnel under the concrete driveway – which is the OPPOSITE DIRECTION from the way the cable has to be run. It is laying there on the ground, all he has to do is walk from the house and follow the cable to wherever it meets the box up the road. How did this man possibly decide to dig the trench for the cable in the opposite direction??? Having this installed was obviously a mistake, but one I’m now roped into until the contract expires.

Summer Heat

Summer is a fine time of year, but I grow weary of the humidity of July and August. I long for the cool breezes that make breathing easier and being outdoors more relaxed. I’d say just about another two months and it should be more tolerable and I can get on with some outside chores that are put on hold until the weather cooperates. Even these guys are moving rather slowly right now with last Saturday’s temps reaching triple digits.







The simplest definition of an adulteration in food means something in it has been replaced with a cheaper filler which may or may not be bad for us, but which certainly is not worth the price we’re paying for what we think is contained within the product. Papers were advising of the adulteration of foods by the mid-1700’s, and by 1820 Fredrick Accum penned a full volume on the adulterations of food. – “A Treatise on Adulterations of Food, and Culinary Poisons”. 1820. London.

pot 2


The following are just a few products which may be in your pantry that aren’t what they seem.

1. Ground red pepper is often used to flavor ginger snaps. Stauffer’s ginger snaps, and probably many others, especially cheaper brands, use ground red pepper to boost the hot spiciness of their ginger snaps. The pepper is less expensive so profits are boosted for the companies that use it. Stauffer’s is honest enough to put it on the label instead of hiding it under the ubiquitous, “natural flavor”. Archway’s “spices” could be anything.

2. Wasabi is difficult to grow and expensive plus because it is not oil-based, its flavor begins to diminish as soon as it is prepared unlike chili peppers. Except for that sold in specialty grocery stores and very high-end restaurants, Wasabi sold in the U.S. is actually a mixture of horseradish, mustard, green food coloring and probably starch. Remember that and read the ingredients when comparing prices of various brands. The same goes for products such as Wasabi peas or Wasabi sauce – if horseradish is listed in the ingredients, there is little to no actual wasabi in the product.

“Sushi sonic 100% real powdered wasabi, 1.5 ounce jar a source of authentic powdered wasabi (Wasabia japonica), and blended with horseradish and mustard for Sushi Sonic 46% Real Wasabi Powder, giving sushi lovers the chance to experience genuine wasabi flavor and health benefits while still having that eye-wateringly pungent taste and aroma they expect in their favorite condiment. Traditionally used as a condiment with sushi, wasabi is also a lively addition to sauces and dressings. To prepare, mix a sufficient amount of lukewarm water with a small quantity of wasabi powder to form a smooth, thick paste. Cover and let stand 10 minutes.” On this product sells for $7.95 or $5.30 per oz.

Roland Wasabi paste in the tube contains no actual wasabi according to the ingredients list on the product, “horseradish and soybean oil”, and while it isn’t listed in the ingredients, it obviously has green coloring. It averages $1.41 per oz. Compare that with S&B brand on which the ingredients are listed as “horseradish, lactose (milk), rice bran oil, sorbitol, salt, water, natural flavor, turmeric, xanthan gum, citric acid, artificial color (FD & C Yellow #5, FD & C Blue #1)”. It still contains no actual wasabi, and look at all those “nice” artificial colors and mysterious ingredients lumped under “natural flavor”.

3. Orange juice listed as “all natural 100% juice” is actually flavored with a product extracted from oils and orange essence. You may ask why bottlers need to flavor natural orange juice with orange oils. Large vats of freshly squeezed orange juice are stored for up to a year after removing the oxygen from the container and removing the oxygen removes the flavor along with it. According to Alyssa Hamilton, researcher and writer, the same folks who develop fragrances for perfume companies develop the flavor packets that go back into the juice to flavor it before it is packaged and shipped to markets. Yum. If you’ve ever considered why your family may favor one brand over another when it’s all supposed to be 100% juice it is because the flavor packets differ from one manufacturer to another, some sweeter, others more tart. Want real orange juice as Mother Nature made it? Squeeze your own.

4. Do you purchase some of the more expensive varieties of juice such as mango, passion fruit, or Trop50’s Pomegranate Blueberry juice? Save your money, there is more apple juice in many of these products than the more expensive fruits. Why? It’s simple – apple juice is cheap filler and the label can still read, “100% juice”. The bulk of juices on the market contain apple juice. The Illinois State Food Commissioner wrote in 1908, “Apple juice is the cheapest of the fruit juices used in the manufacture of jellies and jams”, and the same goes for juice.

Grape juice and pear juice are sometimes added to more exotic and more expensive fruits as fillers and still meet the criteria for 100% juice. While grape, apple, or pear juices aren’t necessarily harmful they could be for someone allergic to apples, grapes, or pears. More importantly why would you pay more for an exotic juice that is still largely apple?

“OCEAN SPRAY, 100% CRANBERRY JUICE, NO SUGAR ADDED, Ingredients: Filtered Water, Grape Juice Concentrate and Cranberry Juice Concentrate, Natural Flavors, Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C).” Because grape juice is listed in the ingredients before cranberry juice, the larger part of the product is grape despite the name on the bottle.
Did you know that Tropicana whose juice is billed as a healthy natural beverage, is owned by the soft drink giant and sugar-peddler, PepsiCo? They don’t own, but partnership with, Dole and so have their finger in the pot, so to speak, for Dole brand fruit juice as well.

“DOLE, MANGO LIME FIESTA, Ingredients: Filtered water, Apple Juice Concentrate, White Grape Juice Concentrate, Mango Juice Concentrate, Lime Juice Concentrate, Clarified Pineapple Juice Concentrate, Natural Flavors and Ascorbid Acid (Vitamin C)”. On this label we see that apple and grape are the primary ingredients although it is sold as mango.

Perhaps the word “Fiesta” entitles Dole to substitute cheaper ingredients so let’s look at another of their products. “DOLE, JUICE, CHILLED PINEAPPLE ORANGE BANANA, Ingredients: Filtered Water, Pineapple Juice Concentrate, Apple Juice Concentrate, Orange Juice Concentrate, Banana Puree, Citric Acid, Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C) and Natural Flavors. We still have a juice made up largely of apple juice in which apple is not included in the name.

Welch’s isn’t above misinforming shoppers about what is in their juice either. Their 100% Juice, white grape strawberry contains apple juice, as does their white grape peach. Read the labels!

Incidentally, in closing, PepsiCo shelled out $1,716,300. in opposing California Proposition 37 which would have mandated labeling on products containing genetically modified crops – think about all that high fructose sweetener in soft drinks and juice or fruit juice drinks the next time you purchase one of their products. Because of the added high fructose corn syrup, studies have shown that 80% of processed foods contain GMO’s.



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This post may be considered a prequel to the previous post on making ginger ale as it will explore the earliest origins of what became one of the most popular drinks of the 20th century.

In the 18th century Ginger Beer was, “among the most popular drinks in the United Kingdom of Great Britain. This Ginger Beer was put up in stone bottles, and in order to mature it, several weeks’ storage was required before it could be sold for consumption”.

About 1850 a beverage was introduced which by reducing the aging process produced a clear beverage [ginger beer was cloudy] that still offered, “the pungent…taste and warmth-giving to the stomach”. Many found the clear product more pleasing in appearance but the flavor was less stable, a condition that would be remedied with perfecting the carbonation process. It was during this early period that bottlers began boosting the spicy flavor of their products for storage by adding, “chillipods”.

Supposedly the first Ginger Ale was exhibited at an exhibition in London in 1851. It was alcoholic and not particularly well received until through the addition of chili peppers to boost the flavor and ridding it of albuminous matter which fermented in storage and sometimes caused a gelatinous consistency , a clear and flavorful beverage emerged. The alcohol content was then, “trace”, and ginger ale, now billed as highly temperate, began a journey toward unbelievable popularity in 1852.

It wasn’t imported into the U.S. until 1866, but within the year it was being manufactured in New York by Henry Downs. – “American Bottler”. Vol. 30. April 15, 1910.

In 1845, that gelatinous consistency was further described as, “a thick, slimy consistence”, in drinks that were given an effervescent quality by injecting carbonic acid, the common process for the time. The thickening of contents was common regardless of which bottler produced them and occurred when flavored with lemon instead of ginger. – “The Annals and Magazine of Natural History”. Vol. 17. Jan. 1846.

A hundred years ago ginger ale was described as having a hold on the American people which far surpassed any other, “of the so-called soft drinks”, one which had been established as a, “stand-by”, and was bottled by every maker of such beverages. The addition of chili peppers had become a hotly contested issue by the turn of the 20th century prompting hearings to determine whether their use was required in labeling.

“But ginger ale, to be worthy of the name, must have certain qualities which are indispensable. First, it must be absolutely pure. By that, we mean that it must be exactly what its name implies. It must be made of ginger, not a mixture of capsicum or any other harmful substances as a substitute. Made in this way it is the ‘Prince of Beverages,’ always assuming that it is bottled with pure water.”

In other words, the classic warmth of ginger was being replaced with much cheaper but just as warm peppers. Lack of honesty in labeling is nothing new. Pepper soda doesn’t sound as appetizing as ginger ale and bottlers who chose to use only genuine ginger wanted their products distinguished from those with adulterants. Makers of pure ginger ale billed it as drinkable in any quantity, by those of any age, and at any time of day with no injurious effects.

Definitions of various terms regarding ginger ale were published in “Brewers Journal” in July 1922 under the title, “The Ginger Ale Controversy Settled”.

“Ginger Ale Flavor, Ginger Ale Concentrate, is the flavoring product in which ginger is the essential constituent, with or without other aromatic and pungent ingredients, citrus oils, and fruit juices.

Ginger Ale is the carbonated beverage prepared from Ginger Ale Flavor, sugar (sucrose) syrup, harmless organic acid, potable water and caramel color….

Ginger Ale with Capsicum Flavor is the water-soluble product obtained from ginger and capsicum, with or without other flavoring substances. The predominating flavor of the product is that of ginger.”

Manufacturers who used capsicum and color to make ginger ale were instructed to post those ingredients on the labels, “with as large type as ‘Ginger Ale’”.

Let’s conclude with some of the ways Ginger Ale and Ginger Syrup were used throughout the 20th century.

GINGER ALE RECIPES were published throughout the 20th century. The following were taken from “The Northwestern Druggist”. Aug. 1922.

Ginger Drake
1 oz. pineapple syrup, 1 oz. lime syrup, 5 oz. carbonated water, 3 oz. domestic ginger ale. Mix the syrups, add the carbonated water, and then float the ginger ale on top of this.

Ginger Soda
2 oz. ginger ale, 1 oz. lemon syrup, 1 oz. orange syrup, slice of orange, slice of lemon, 8 oz. carbonated water. Mix the syrups, then add the carbonated water and ginger ale and mix again. Decorate with slices of orange and lemon.

1 oz. orange syrup, 4 oz. ginger ale, 3 oz. carbon ated water, sprig of mint. Mix the syrup with the carbonated water and ginger ale, add the sprig of mint, and serve.
Canada Dry Ginger Ale advertised three different ways to use ginger ale in “Life” magazine in April 1958, the first of which was mixing ginger ale and cold milk in a 1 to 1 ratio. The next was to heat 2 cups of ginger ale to boiling and stir in fruit flavored gelatin, mix, and refrigerate to produce, “Bright ginger flavor and livelier carbonation” in gelatin. Lastly, ginger ale was poured into a tall glass and topped with ice cream to make a float.

Using ginger ale in gelatin wasn’t new though as recipes had been published for some 30 years or more by the time Canada Dry’s advertisement appeared in print.

In 1919, Helen Moore included a whole chapter on drinks made with ginger ale and the remainder of the book was also liberally filled with drinks and punches in which ginger ale or ginger syrup was, if not the star, a major player in their production. Among them were what I described in a previous post as one of our favorites – white grape juice and ginger ale over ice. “Put one pint of white grape juice, and one quart of ginger ale on ice until very cold. Mix together when ready to serve”.

Interesting mixtures included ginger and cider, pineapple, eggnog, lemon and sarsaparilla, grape and pineapple, etc. – “Uncle Sam’s Water Wagon”.

For a bracing winter beverage the “Confectioners’ and Baker’s Gazette” recommended combining 1 oz. of ginger syrup with ¼ of a large lemon, and filling the mug with hot water. – Jan. 10, 1915.

More Soda Varieties


Several people dropped a line saying they liked the article on making our own Ginger Ale I will add a few additional recipes. Any of them may be tweaked to your preference. We like combining 100% juice with club soda which requires absolutely no work. Our favorites are probably cranberry or white grape.

1 to 1 ¼ cups sugar
1 cup water
2 cups frozen berries (blackberries, raspberries, elder berries, etc.)

Combine all ingredients in a nonreactive pan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, simmer about 10 minutes, stirring if needed. Remove from the heat and let cool. Strain out the solids and discard. Refrigerate the syrup.

To use: Fill a glass with ice, add syrup and fill with club soda. Start with 2 or 3 Tablespoons of syrup, and if you want the flavor stronger add more to taste.

1 ½ cups chopped rhubarb
½ cup sugar
1 ½ cups water. Make as above, simmering the mixture about 15 to 20 minutes before straining it.

2 cups hulled strawberries (or blueberries)
2 cups water
2 cups sugar

2 cups sugar
Juice of 1 lemon
1 vanilla bean, split

Combine ¼ cup of water and the sugar, heat until it caramelizes. Add 2 cups water, the lemon juice, and the vanilla bean and seeds. Bring to a boil, simmer 5 minutes, and remove from the heat, cover, and let sit for 1 hour. Discard the vanilla bean. Bottle and refrigerate.

4 tablespoons orange zest, quickly blanched in boiling water and drained. Discard the blanching water and use fresh water for the recipe.
1 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
2 cups water
2 cups sugar
1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
Strain before bottling and refrigerate.

The zest of 2 oranges, 1 lime, and 1 lemon
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg, freshly grated if possible
1 small piece of star anise pod, crushed
½ teaspoon food grade dried lavender
1 Tablespoon chopped ginger
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups sugar
½ cup dark brown sugar

Combine water with zests, and spices. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes. Strain and discard the solids.

Stir the sugars together and whisk them into the syrup with the vanilla. Refrigerate.

To use: Over ice, add ¼ cup of syrup with 1 cup club soda or to taste.

2 cups fresh rose or violet petals (be absolutely certain there are no pesticides or other chemicals on them)
2 cups water
2 cups sugar or 1 cup each sugar and honey

Combine, simmer 20 minutes. Strain. Cool. Refrigerate.

1 quart apple juice
1/3 cup honey or raw sugar
¼ cup mint leaves, washed, drained

Bring to a boil, simmer until reduced to about 2 cups. Remove and discard the mint. Refrigerate syrup.

1 oz. pure vanilla extract
3 pints simple syrup
1 pint of cream

Bring to a boil, simmer about 5 minutes. Cool. Refrigerate. For the simple syrup combine equal parts of sugar and water, bring to a boil, and simmer 5 minutes. Refrigerate until needed.

WATERMELON (requires no cooking)
6 cups watermelon, seeded, chopped
4 Tablespoons Confectioner’s sugar
1 ½ Tablespoons of fresh lime juice
1/8 teaspoon salt.

Puree ingredients in a blender or food processor. Strain. Refrigerate the syrup. To use: combine syrup and sparkling water to taste and serve over ice. (You can try this with cantaloupe).

Experiment with whatever flavors you like and let me know if you have a favorite. – Blissful Meals yall, THF.


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