Pomanders (from the French Pomme D'Ambre, meaning "Apple of Amber") were balls containing perfumes such as ambergris, civet or musk. They were worn around the neck in medieval and renaissance times to ward off infection and guard the wearer from bad smells - there were LOTS of bad smells back then!
In early America, it became customary to make pomanders from oranges and cloves. Displayed in baskets, or hung in wardrobes, these pomanders lend a lovely scent to your room, drawers or closets.
You will need:
- An orange, grapefruit or other citrus fruit. You can also use an apple
- Optional: A skewer or icepick to start holes and make it easier to insert the cloves into the fruit
- Optional: Powdered cinnamon, or a mixture of spices such as cinnamon,
allspice and nutmeg
Stick cloves in the fruit until it is completely covered. If you have difficulty getting the clove ends through the rind, make holes with a fork, skewer or icepick.
Optionally, roll the pomander in the powdered spices.
Cure the pomander by putting it in a very low oven for about 1 hour.
Leave it in a cool, dry place for about a week to dry. If using spices, you can re-roll it in the powdered cinnamon or spice mixture daily for this first week.