Days are short; nights are long and cold. The
Winter Solstice has come and gone, an event full of hope. When we reach this
point, every 24 hours will bring an extra ray of sunshine. Although the coldest
times are yet to come, the promise of spring will be ours each day. This is a
time when we seek comfort: hot cider, fluffy sweaters, and special potions to
keep our skin comfortable when the winds of winter blow. We visit one another’s
homes, and bring small gifts which betoken the warmth in our hearts.
This recipe will soothe your senses, and remind you that flowers will bloom
again. You can make it as a present for yourself, or for those you love.
The four basic ingredients may be found in the gourmet food section of your
supermarket. If you like, they may be supplemented by special additions from a
candy-making supply house or health food store. You will be able to tailor this
to any special preferences or sensitivities you have.
You will want a small portable electric mixer or whisk to make this. You can
whisk it manually, but your arm will get very tired. It is convenient, although
not necessary to have a double-boiler pan. It can be made in a metal mixing bowl
set atop a pan of boiling water. This is a very luxurious gift, and may be made
more so by the container in which you place it.
What are we going to make? A Body and Hand Cream. If labels that offer all
natural ingredients which are safe enough to eat impress you, you will be
delighted with this, because everything comes from the grocery store. A little
goes a long way, so even the most expensive ingredients will be economical, as
compared to something from any manufacturer of cosmetics.
Body and Hand Cream Ingredients
1 cup Oil (I recommend Hazelnut, Walnut, or Almond Oils. Do not use Olive or
Corn Oil, unless you want to smell like a salad.)
3/4 cup Rose Water, Orange Flower Water, or Distilled Water
(You may also use 1/2 cup Distilled Water, and 1/4 cup of a favorite Cologne)
2 ounces Paraffin
(Food grade Paraffin will be found with the canning supplies in the market. It
is sold in 1 pound boxes which contain 4 squares. Half of one square will be 2
ounces. You may use 1 ounce of Paraffin for a lotion consistency)
1 tablespoon Extract or Flavoring Oil (You will get the strongest scent from
using an Oil. Lemon and Orange Oils are in most stores. Candy-making supply
stores have many others such as Ginger, Violet, Clove, and Rose).
In a double boiler or metal bowl set atop boiling water, place the Oil and
Paraffin. The Paraffin will melt more quickly, if chopped into small pieces.
Heat over boiling water until the Paraffin is melted and invisible. Using a
portable electric mixer or whisk on a medium speed, beat the Oil mixture, while
adding the Liquid in a slow steady stream. Remove from heat.
Chill for 20 minutes in the refrigerator, by which time the mixture will look
white in color. It will probably have separated, but do not worry. Add the
Extract or Flavoring Oil. Using the electric mixer or whisk, whip the Cream
until it is smooth. It is best to store this in a dark cool place. Do remember
that it has no preservative, and that both light and heat will cause the Oil to
go rancid more quickly. This will stay fresh for about 3 months.
A Bonus Use for This Cream: Rub a SMALL amount into the palms of your hands, and
apply to the ends of towel-dried hair, before using your styling product. This
is the best cure for “The Frizzies” that I have ever found