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Filtering by Tag: spring

Shamrock Peppermint Creams

Ben Ashby

Shamrock Peppermint Creams


To be perfectly honest, I’m probably only about 3% Irish, but as a little kid I always got strangely excited for St. Patrick’s Day. In grade school we would go outside for recess and come back in to find the items in our desks were all messed up and rearranged and the teachers told us it was from the pesky leprechauns. To this day, I still don’t know why, but I thought that was the coolest thing ever.  

Many years later and I still find myself getting excited for March 17th to roll around. Seeing all the green of this holiday makes me feel like spring is right within my reach! It’ll be here before we know it and for that I’m celebrating with these bright green shamrock peppermint creams!

If you’re wondering what a peppermint cream is think of it as a slightly larger after dinner mint. That’s what it reminds me of. If you can’t find a miniature shamrock cookie cutter a bigger one will work just as well. And if you’re a chocolate lover like me, dip your mints in some melted chocolate and sprinkle with some St. Patty’s sprinkles!

Shamrock Peppermint Creams

1 3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar

4-6 Tablespoons sweetened condensed milk

1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract

Green food coloring paste

A mini shamrock-shaped cutter

Sift the confectioners’ sugar into a large bowl. Gradually add the condensed milk and peppermint, mixing with a wooden spoon. The mixture should come together like a dough and you may need to use your hands towards the end of mixing. To knead the dough, sprinkle confectioners’ sugar on a clean work surface. Shape the dough into a ball and push on it and press it onto the work surface, turning it round often. Do this for just a minute of so until smooth. Divide the dough in half and tint one half green using food coloring. Knead the dough again until it is evenly green. On the work surface, roll out the dough to a thickness of 1/4 inch using a rolling pin. Stamp out shamrocks with your cookie cutter and arrange them on a sheet of baking parchment. Let dry out overnight. Dip in melted chocolate and cover with sprinkles if desired. 

Lilac Sugar

Ben Ashby

Every morning should begin with tea. Festive teas are the best. This lilac sugar is the perfect addition to your mornings. As lilac comes into season why not ensure it'll last all year long. By simply preserving the gorgeous floral flavors of lilac in sugar it infuses the sugar with the most wonderful flavor. You'll never want to return to basic table sugar again. 


Berry or Fine Sugar: if super fine sugar isn't available throw your regular sugar into a food processor.

Lilac Blooms: for a quart jar I used around a cup of blooms.

An Airtight Container


Simply alternate layers of blooms and sugar until you have either filled your jar. Once complete put the lid on the jar and shake until well mixed. Shake once a day for about a week to make sure the flowers dry evenly. 

After one week strain the sugar to remove the blooms. Store in airtight container. 

Monthly Playlist: March into Spring

Ben Ashby

Spring is your season for rebirth and renewal, let our playlist of March favorites take you on that journey. LISTEN HERE.

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Clayton & Crume

Ben Ashby

How was Clayton & Crume created?

Clayton & Crume was created over a few beers at 3AM in a Gatlinburg hot
tub. We had been sewing and creating for the better part of a year, and
decided to make it our livelihood. Three years later and we're growing
faster than ever.

What was the first product you made and/or sold?

As young men on a college budget, we wanted a belt that wasn’t on the
market--so we made it. We started with custom-designed canvas belts for the
collegiate lifestyle, constructed entirely in our dorm room workshop. As we
began to focus on developing solid leather goods, we fell in love with the
challenge of offering beautiful, durable goods at an honest price.

How do you decide on products?

Each product has been created to fulfill needs that have arisen in our own
lives. The plan for the future, after overwhelming request, is to add more
lifestyle goods-- particularly for women. Leather clutches, totes and
duffels are on the immediate horizon. Last week we took a 10-day trip and
made ourselves prototype leather dopp kits. Those will be up on the site
within a week, and they're killer.

How do you find new ideas for products?

Our mission is to create possessions we can use for the rest of our lives,
and in that endeavor, the ideas are never ending. Every worn-out item in
our lives is an opportunity to reinvent and create anew, C&C style.

Do you create collaborative products with brands you work with?

Our dream is to collaborate with an iconic, time-tested brand. Custom belts
with Pendleton Wool or Harris Tweed would be insane. Maybe one day.

What inspires Clayton & Crume?

Good products tell stories, and we’re inspired by the stories our products
will tell after decades of use by those we’ve created them for.

What's your favorite thing about supporting American makers?

Makers don't work for a paycheck, rather, their work is the expression
of a lifelong passion to create. We'll always support a maker, American or
otherwise, who puts his/her name on the product as a testament of passion
and quality.

What's been your biggest challenge?

Our biggest challenge is probably the same as any other maker-- scaling
our operation. Every item is made by hand in our 300sf workshop, and there
are only so many hours in a day to create. We'll likely never be the brand
with 100 retail shops and global distribution, but that's the way we like
it. We know who we are and plan to stay that way-- small and dedicated to
our craft.

Clayton & Crume