Essential Oils in the Kitchen

A Beautiful KitchenThe kitchen produces many smells, from fresh baked bread to malodorous boiled cabbage. We all have a trash can, and perhaps this is where the wet coats and muddy boots are left to dry. Litter boxes and animal food bowls are often kept in here as well. There are innumerable sources of aroma in the kitchen; and yet many kitchens are poorly ventilated, so not enough air circulates to clear away the bad or unpleasant aroma molecules.

Essential oils are used to clean the air, rather than merely masking smells. Another huge advantage is that when used correctly they are harmless. It’s not a great idea to spray foods with the oils for taste reasons, but it is safe to do so. They are also great around children for the same reason.

In addition to water molecules from steam, tiny globules of fat are released from frying, roasting, and grilling. What we need are essential oils that are capable of wrapping themselves around the fat molecules, deodorizing them, and leaving the kitchen as fresh and appealing as the food we prepare.

A Beautiful Antique SinkThe following oils make an excellent air spray when used on their own or in combination:

Rosemary
Lemon
Eucalyptus
Lavender
Lime

When washing out the fridge, freezer, or oven add 1 drop of Lemon, Lime, Grapefruit, Bergamot, Mandarin, or Orange to the final rinse water. This will deodorize without permeating the surface with a heavy perfume.

For wiping down work surfaces, cupboards, sinks, tiles, walls, or stovetops, add a couple drops to your wash water or 1 drop directly to your rag of the following oils:

Eucalyptus
Pine
Lavender
Cypress
Lemon
Lemongrass
Lime
Thyme
Grapefruit
Palma Rosa
Bergamot

Many of these oils are uplifting and even antidepressants, which brings us to washing the floor! Use any of the above oils in the wash water at about 4 drops per pint.

A Beautiful KitchenTo help sanitize dish towels, rags, and sponges, simply soak them in a bowel or bucket full of boiling water to which you have added 1 drop of Eucalyptus, Thyme, Tea Tree, or Lavender. Leave them to soak a while, then after they have cooled enough to handle load them into the washing machine as normal.  The boiling water and oils will kill the bacteria washing machines can;t touch because they don’t get hot enough.

If you’ve opted to using dishwasher detergents without dyes and perfumes or even if you’re using traditional detergent, a couple drops of Lemon added before the detergent in your machine will do wonders for your nose, and helps fight bacteria.

If your dishwasher breathes however, there are many oils that can be used to help the task become less unbearable. They might also encourage everyone in the family to take a turn at the sink. Simply add:

3 drops Bergamot
5 drops Lime
2 drops Lavender
1 drop Orange
per 3 ounces of unscented dish soap

Lovely Kitchen LayoutKeep in mind that most essential oils lose their medicinal and beautifying properties after 2 years. Save those that have expired however, and periodically put 2 drops down the drain throughout the day. Hot water will activate the aromatic properties which last forever and a day. Also use them when washing windows and trash cans to add a lovely fragrance in unexpected places.

This article was adapted from:
The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy by Valerie Ann Worwood

All Images were found on Google.com

Homemade Dishwasher Detergent Cubes

Homemade Dishwasher Cubes Hello everyone! Today I am sharing an awesome recipe I have adapted slightly from Louise’s Country Closet which I am dying to try.

I love making my own cleaning products, and this one is no different. When it comes to the texture of the mixture you’re going to be making it is important to have the right amount of moisture. Add the liquids slowly and mix them in completely before you add more.

You want your mixture to feel somewhat like damp sand. It will hold a shape when pressed together, but it isn’t damp and sticky. It can take some playing around, just remember to be patient and add the liquids slowly.

Ingredients:

  • Dishwasher Cube Ingredients1 Cup Borax
  • 1 Cup Washing Soda
  • 1/4 Cup Epsom Salt
  • Lemon Juice
  • Essential Oils of your Choice

Instructions:

  1. Combine borax, washing soda, and epsom salt thoroughly in a large bowl.
  2. Measure out 1 cup of the powder mixture and add it to a medium bowl.
  3. Add 10 drops of an essential oil or oil blend of your choice. I recommend citrus oils to add a lovely scent and help disinfect your dishes.
  4. Add the lemon juice to the medium bowl one tablespoon at a time.
  5. Mix between each tablespoon, and check the consistency. You want it to be slightly moist but not soaking. It should hold its shape when pressed between your fingers, yet still crumble slightly afterwards. The amount of lemon juice you add will depend on the humidity, but 4 tablespoons should be the maximum added.
  6. Dishwasher Cube MixtureSpoon the mixture into an ice cube tray and pack it down firmly.
  7. Repeat these steps until you have used all of the mixture.
  8. Set the trays in a safe place to dry overnight.
  9. Gently pop out the cubes and store in an airtight container to keep them fresh.
  10. Add 1 cube per load and enjoy your handcrafted eco-friendly detergent.

All images are from Louise’s Country Closet