We just got this amazingly fragrant and fresh Black Frankincense just before the Trade doors closed this year. It is not prepared or touched in any way, it is just the way it arrived. We received it in its original big rough harvest sacks with camels stamped on them. The scent is gorgeous and many of the pieces are so soft and sticky you can pull them apart with your fingers.
The scent is wonderful, a spicey orange with sweet balsamic pine notes. It has an earthy, rough, dark appearance in contrast with the bright white Hougary.
Some fascinating thoughts on black frankincense and where it grows from Trygve Harris (of Enfleurage) in Oman:
“These trees are my personal favorites--they are stout and wise yet still approachable. I call my favorite grove the Old Lady trees because that\'s how they seem to me. The scent, as you know, has a spicy orange pine sparkle, bright and happy and purely Dhofari, quite unrelated to the lemony notes of Somali.
I think maybe the reason this is stickier and gooier might have to do with it coming from very high humidity areas. Most of the other frankincenses come from a little drier areas.
The road that bisects the home of these trees, the road to Yemen, and the mountains themselves are called \"The mountains of the Moon. This is because these cliffs soar so high that to be on top of them was surely coming close to the moon! But I think it also has to do with the strange landscape--the limestone, the rocks, the bizarre vegetation......they could be from another planet. I certainly don\'t relish being there as darkness comes. The whole area is inhabited by djinn. Salalah is a center for magic, and Djinn and witches are pretty common. But you can see how the rocks could come alive in your mind even without the magic. ”
Tips on using raw sticky resins:
- Place it in the freezer overnight and then break it up with a hammer
- to clean your hands use cooking oil to loosen and then wash with soap and warm water