Autumn has brought with it some welcome rain, however the air temperatures have still been quite pleasant with daily averages in the low 20's (Celsius). The Osmanthus hedge is now covered in tiny white fragrant flowers and I am entering the second stage of my experimentation with this flower. I am wanting to make a intense an aroma as possible using the still. I don't have the time or expertise to make and haven't yet sourced perfumers alcohol to try a tincture. For this distillation I decided to do a total immersion (hydro) distillation with double the amount of flowers as my first attempt. I picked the flowers in the evening (it had been raining) so left them on a paper towel spread out over night to dry out totally.
As I was trying to condense the aroma as much as possible I decided to distil using previous versions of osmanthus hydrosol.
60 gm of fresh flowers picked 14 hours earlier
125gm of osmanthus hydrosol distilled 1 week ago (the end of the distilling)
250 gm of re distilled osmanthus gel I had made 2 years previously from a commercial osmanthus hydrosol
700 gm boiling water.
0943 hr still on (expected to heat hydrosols in still-water added boiling). Flowers immersed in liquid
0950 hr distillate appears
1008hr heat turned off- just started to smell 'cooked'
500 ml distillate obtained double filtered- aroma is intense, sweet and pleasant
1011 heat turned back on to see what else I could obtain
1016 heat turned off
125ml extra hydrosol- starting to smell sharper and less sweet- filtered and bottled and labelled separately.
My next attempt will be a few days using lemon geranium hydrosol as the water base and see what I can create with that! I also have some massive lemon blossoms appearing and combined with the osmnathus blossoms it may make an interesting mix.
I hope you enjoy reading my jottings and feel free to leave comments, thanks Wendy
Posted: Tuesday 4 January 2022