It's amazing how smells can trigger memories. When I was walking through the Farmer's Market it happened. A wave of nostalgia and stream of memories. I took a few more sniffs of the fresh chamomile and tried to place the memory. It is distinctly different from the dried version, which I often handle. I couldn't quite grasp the exact moment in time but it took me back.
I remember moving to Taos as a child in the peak of summer time. My mother had been been offered a job in Taos, New Mexico. Her job was located in a beautiful compound at the base of Taos mountain, surrounded by Native American land. No one can build there so the land sits untouched. Fields of crisp green grass with cows and buffalos roaming in a distance. The store was placed in these gorgeous old wood buildings amongst winding paths of wild flowers, trees and ponds. It was a wild playground for me and I would often hang out in the gardens. I used to pick these flowers, I remember the raw scent on my hands. Smelling them today I was taken back as if it were yesterday. Amazing how a scent can do that.
for chamomile tea
1 bunch of fresh chamomile
for chamomile syrup
1 cup of sugar
2 cups of water
Give the chamomile a good rinse. Place half of the chamomile flowers into a container with water. Allow to steep in the sun for the afternoon. Today it was 90 degrees and plenty of sun so this is ideal for sun tea. In a sauce pan heat 2 cups of water and 1 cup of sugar. Once the water comes to a boil and the sugar is evaporated turn off heat and add the remaining chamomile. Allow to steep into the simple syrup until cool. Remove flowers once the syrup has infused (about an hour). This syrup is delicious and can be used in a variety of ways. Pour sun tea over ice, finish with the chamomile syrup. Very light, sweet and subtle. A delicious summer drink.