~ { s e n s e s } ~

{ s m e ll  + t a s t e }

in collaboration w/Kat&Sadie

p u r p o s e

Our intention for this project was to harvest from our local landscape, using foraged natural materials as focal ingredients , and create beverages that feature the smells and tastes of our environment. Each of us chose a drink to make and serve to the class. I chose to concoct an elderflower-nootka rose syrup to serve as a lemonade.

These are the instructions for both syrups from different websites (links below each recipe). After I had completed each syrup separately, I boiled them together to create the combination.

\e l d e r f l o w e r    s y r u p\

  1. The first step to making your own elderflower syrup is to properly gather the blossoms. First, do not remove all of the blossoms from one bush. The bushes need the blossoms in order to produce berries, so try taking a handful of blossoms from several different elderflower bushes instead of stripping one clean. This shouldn’t be too difficult. Most likely if you’ve found one elderflower bush, there are more close by. Use scissors to cut the blossoms from the branches. Do not pull or yank with your hands as this could damage the branches. Place the blossoms in a wicker basket, cloth bag, or paper bag. Do not use a plastic bag. This will cause the flowers to sweat and wilt easily. Lastly, be sure to select blossoms that are fully opened and not browning or past their prime. This will affect the quality of the elderflower syrup.
  2. Once gathered, keep the blossoms in a cool dry place until you are ready to use them. It’s best to prepare the syrup within 24 hours of picking the blossoms.
  3. Next, get a large pot and fill it with 35 ounces (1,000 grams) of sugar. Add 5 cups of water to the sugar and 1 teaspoon of citric acid. If you don’t have citric acid, not to worry. It acts as a natural preservative, and helps the syrup stay fresh longer. If you plan to use the syrup right away you can leave it out. If you want to store your syrup, but aren’t sure where to find citric acid, it can be found in most supermarkets in the section where they have jarring material for making jams and marmalades.
  4. Bring the syrup to a boil over medium high heat and cook until the sugar has dissolved. Once dissolved, boil the sugar for an additional five minutes. In the meantime, wash and slice one organic lemon. Carefully trim the stems away from the elderflower blossoms. Place the blossoms into a large stainless steel bowl (you will need 2 cups of blossoms) and discard the stems. Add the lemon slices.
  5. Pour the hot syrup into the bowl with the elderflower blossoms and the lemon slices. Stir gently to blend it all together. Cover the bowl with a tea towel and store in a cool, dark place for 3-4 days, stirring the syrup once daily. Steeping the syrup with the blossoms for less time will produce a weaker flavor. Do not store the syrup with the blossoms for more than 4 or 5 days, as the blossoms will begin to wilt and ferment.
  6. Strain the blossoms from the syrup. It should now have a lovely golden hue. Bring the syrup back to a boil in a clean pot. Meanwhile prepare several jars for storing the syrup. You will prepare the jars similarly to jars for jamming. However, instead of boiling my jars, which I find to be unnecessary extra work, I place my clean jars in the oven at 300F (148C) for 15 minutes. This will perfectly sterilize the jars.
  7. Pour the hot syrup into the sterilized jars and carefully (using oven mitts or a dish towel) close the jars. Store the elderflower syrup in a cool dry place for up to one year. Once opened, store the jars in the refrigerator.

source: https://www.huffingtonpost.com/marisa-churchill/how-to-make-your-own-elde_b_5437146.html

\ r o s e   s y r u p\

  1. To begin making the homemade rose syrup recipe, we will first clean and dry the fresh rose petals. Skip the following process if you are using store bought dried rose petals.
  2. If they are fresh petals then clean rose petals in running water. Dry the rose petals completely and place them on kitchen paper towels. We will dry the rose petals in room temperature on the paper towels. The process of drying will take a couple of days. After a couple of days, you will notice the rose petals have become crisp and dry. When you touch them they will break apart.
  3. Once the petals are dry, we are ready to make the rose syrup. If you bought the store bought petals you can use it at this stage.
  4. Boil the water in a saucepan. Place the petals in a glass bowl and pour the boiled water on top of the petals, stir for a few seconds. Allow the rose petals to rest in the water until the water cools down. Once the petals cool down, refrigerate the petals and water filled bowl for 12 to 15 hours.
  5. Next day, strain the water into a saucepan (your rose water will be dark red). Place the saucepan on medium heat. Add the sugar and clove to the rose water. Keep stirring to dissolve the sugar. As it heats up you will the water frothing on the top. Gradually the foam will go away as the water begins to boil. Once the water begins to boil, turn the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes and turn off the heat.
  6. Allow the Rose Syrup to cool completely. The syrup will thicken as it cools down.

Source: https://www.archanaskitchen.com/homemade-rose-syrup-recipe

This is a really cool site that shows you where to harvest different things in all the world! https://fallingfruit.org/  

{ s o  u n d }

Urban Soundscapes unrealized

For this unrealized project I would enlist an orchestra the task of creating an urban soundscape, mimicking the sounds we hear around us all day, combining the rumble of buses whizzing by, dogs barking, children yelling, birds singing, shop bells ringing, and so on and so forth, to create an atmosphere that leaves one feeling like they’re walking down the street, even when they’re just lying in bed. 

{ touch }

Grass weavings

This is an exercise in pattern making with one’s hands. In this simple exercise I collected tall grasses and weaved them through black thread.IMG_0950.JPGIMG_0952.JPGIMG_0953.JPGIMG_0955.JPG

{ s  i g h  t }

Moving with the Lights unrealized

For this unrealized project my idea is to observe an intersection for a long period of time in a subtle way. I would carry a hidden go pro to document the day. My plan would be to walk with the lights, crossing the street when green, turning to cross the next corner, and waiting at the reds, just like anybody else who is walking. But I would do this for 4-8 hours.

The idea behind this is that we are not often in settings like this for long periods of time. We are most often going from point A to point B, moving through the environment, but not really being a part of it for very long. I chose this intersection because it’s very busy; it’s in an interesting part of town where the houseless people of Victoria often congregate and share an interesting opposition to the well-dressed, business people middle-class that work and live in the area. By moving with the lights, it will give an insight into what this intersection sees everyday.

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{ sig h t  + t ou c h }

When Sadie, Kat, and I went ingredient foraging for for our taste and smell project I was very sick, leaving me congested and unable to smell or taste. It was interesting having to rely on only my sight and tough when it came to collecting plants that would be used for their taste and smell. Even during the syrup preparation process, I didn’t know if anything I was doing actually tasted good or had even worked. Presenting the drink to everyone, I just had to assume that the syrup had captured the scent and flavour of the elderflower and nootka rose. I truly tasted it for the first time two days after presenting. I thought this to be an interesting experience, as it is not often that we can turn off our sense of taste and smell.