December 12, 2013

Simmering Stovetop Potpourri and Printable Tag


My sister-in-law introduced me to this fresh simmering potpourri a few seasons ago. And I've made it every year since - not only to fill my home with the smells of the season but also to share with friends. It makes the most charming gift to give! And if you're like me, you're about to go full-steam-ahead hand-making goodies for teachers, neighbors, and friends. So here's the most delightful, fresh, seasonal holiday simmering potpourri that you can make and share! Grace and I have even found particular places in the house where we can smell it the best...and we find ourselves hanging out there. If 'cozy' had a smell, it'd be this.

I've got mine on the back-burner right now, and I always make it in Euna Mae's vintage Club Aluminum saucepan. Sigh.

I package and gift mine in small mason jars with lids, ribbon, and small wooden spoons that can be used to stir the potpourri and can later be used for sugar, salt, or coffee spoons. But you can certainly use your very favorite packaging! Small jute bags, white paper lunch sacks tied with string, whatever you love! I've included a printable instruction tag for you to print and use on yours! 
{fresh simmering potpourri}

1 cup of fresh cranberries
1 small orange
3 cinnamon sticks
2-3 tablespoons cloves
1 vanilla bean (optional)
1 star anise (optional)

Slice the orange into quarters. Place all of the ingredients into a small saucepan. Fill the pan with water and simmer on low heat on your stove's smallest burner.  Stir hourly and refill the water as needed. Over time, it will start to look like mucky berry sludge. But that's okay. It'll smell so good by then that you won't care a bit!  Refrigerate the mixture after each use, adding water and reheating it for up to a month. As you do your holiday cooking, you may freshen the mixture by tossing in your leftover lemon and orange rinds or occasionally a handful of fresh cranberries. A few shakes or grinds of nutmeg are divine too!

Save and print this downloadable tag OR reprint the instructions on your own paper/design.
Finished size 4x2.5