A few days ago, on a visit to my eighty-seven year old aunt who lives in the countryside, I caught the distinctive sweet whiff of Linden blossoms in the air. I followed it to the tree, which was in full bloom. My sister, my spry aunt and I stretched up to the green branches, and as we chatted, the three of us gathered the creamy-white clusters of flowers by the handful, heavily scented with that aroma that I associate with Linden honey.
My grandmother was a firm believer in the curative properties of this dark brown, intensely flavored honey, which she'd blend with warm milk to soothe a cough I was plagued with in childhood. I've sipped many a cup of warm milk sweetened with Linden honey, sitting with my grandmother.
There are no Linden trees around here, but I've prepared countless cups of warm milk and the local orange-blossom honey for my children in times of sickness, and made many a pot of tea infused with dried Linden blossoms which I've foraged here and there over the years (one time in southern France!).
Like my grandmother, I’ve become a firm believer in the curative properties of Linden blossoms - and of all we eat and drink that has been grown, gathered and prepared with love.