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Peppermint Family Essential Oil
(Peppermint, Spearmint, Bee Balm …)

What you need:
– EssenExTM 100 Distillation Kit
– 100 grams of Peppermint Leaf, chopped or ground.

Preparation:
– To facilitate chopping, place Peppermint in Freezer for 24 hours.
– For initial runs, use 100 grams. Later, more or less may be used.
– If dried peppermint leaf, add 40 gm water to 100 gm leaf. (0.4 to 0.5 : 1 by mass)
– Place in EssenExTM as described in user manual.

Trial:
– Place the reactor into the microwave with mug of water.
—- If multiple batches are run, change water in the mug between trials.
– Each batch should run for 6 minutes on a power setting of HIGH (1100 watts)
—- Lower power units: simply add 30 seconds to a minute for the cooking phase.
– Allow the batch to cool for 6 minutes. In or outside the microwave. Caution: do not raise lid prior to 4 minutes and be careful if moving from microwave as jar will be quite warm initially.
—- This is a key step to your success. Cooling allows the vapors to condense and form more oil and it allows the reactor to be handled much easier!

Collection:
– Pour top contents of the beaker into the easy separator and rotate it using the palms of your hands while resting it on a cloth (kitchen towel) on a hard surface (counter top). The motion should be similar to starting a fire with sticks.
– After a few seconds, stop rotating the separator and observe the oil layer.
– Repeat the process if you believe more oil will collect.
– Once the oil is separated (above the hydrosol in the neck of the flask), use the pipette to place it in a vial.

Yield:
– Upon lifting the lid, a small amount of ice should be remaining on screw.
—- If not, then reduce the amount of water added.
—- Peppermint species have wide variation: 0.5 to 2% by mass. Consult appropriate botanists for best cultivars.
 100 gm Peppermint yield from 0.5 to 2.4 ml oil.

Note: Peppermint was the first botanical material in the EssenEx-100 Device. A Master’s Thesis by Carmen Velasco has a device which was the precursor to the EssenEx-100 design.

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