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Essentials Oils from Birch Wood

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Essentials Oils from Birch Wood

Postby taylor » Tue Feb 13, 2018 1:14 pm

For use in the apple hard cider industry in North America, I have been trying to figure out how to get the very delicate and complex essential oils out of paper birch wood (betula papyrifera), but have failed miserably. I start with birch lumber, and grind into shavings. I have tried steam distillation with poor/limited results; and also tried various methods using ethanol, but as of yet have not landed on anything usable.

I was hoping that someone in this distinguished group might have some suggestions or advice from working with birch or other types of woods. Actually, any suggestions or even guesses would be very much appreciated. If this is even doable, I would of course ideally prefer something that not so complex. And obviously, the end product has to be consumable.
Thank you for your kind consideration.

Taylor
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Re: Essentials Oils from Birch Wood

Postby firewater69 » Tue Feb 13, 2018 2:15 pm

From what I've read, they steam distill the bark, not the wood. I have no idea or experience this is only what I've read.
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Re: Essentials Oils from Birch Wood

Postby Pikey » Tue Feb 13, 2018 2:39 pm

firewater69 wrote:From what I've read, they steam distill the bark, not the wood. I have no idea or experience this is only what I've read.


Not sure about that ! - Silver Birch "Betula pendula" can be used to make tar by heating the rolled up bark in a can. Ray Mears uses it a lot to glue stuff together and even seal boats I believe. Hrady a "delicate flavour though I would think :barf:
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Re: Essentials Oils from Birch Wood

Postby taylor » Tue Feb 13, 2018 3:49 pm

It's definitely not the bark (completely different). Do you have any experience that you can share with distilling essential oils from wood..in general?
Thanks so much.
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Re: Essentials Oils from Birch Wood

Postby just sayin' » Tue Feb 13, 2018 9:27 pm

I have never tried to distill essential oil. I have experience macerating birch twigs. I use sweet birch (Betula lenta) twigs in my "high test root beer", the birch twigs, sassafras roots, star anise and a bit of vanilla bean make up most of the flavor profile. All the above is macerated in 40 ABV neutral ethanol and is sweeten to taste with natural maple syrup. Yummy stuff, the wintergreen like flavor of the birch is key to getting the flavor just right.
Good luck!
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Re: Essentials Oils from Birch Wood

Postby punkin » Tue Feb 13, 2018 9:32 pm

Great info, thanks for the contribution!
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Re: Essentials Oils from Birch Wood

Postby Y1969 » Wed Feb 14, 2018 2:23 am

Another type of birch grows in Russia. This is Betula pubescens.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Betula_pubescens

A Russian national drink is prepared from it.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Birch_sap

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on a three liter jar written "Birch juice with pulp"

Seriously, then the error has crept in. When flavoring the drinks, bark or birch wood is not used. Inflorescences are used. This is called "vodka on birch catkins"

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Re: Essentials Oils from Birch Wood

Postby sasquatch » Thu Feb 15, 2018 12:14 pm

I have made essentials oils out of leaves.
I was going to try Juniper wood shaving but never got to it.
You get very little out of a lot.
With the leaves it was Sweet Gail.
It was the amount of the size of a banana box and I think I got 7 ml of essential oil.

Have you ever tried birch syrup?
It has a interesting taste.
Strong, dark and sweet.
When you cook with it you can totally change a dish.
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Re: Essentials Oils from Birch Wood

Postby Pikey » Fri Feb 16, 2018 4:59 pm

It's really close to birch sap season over here.

I'm intrigued
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Re: Essentials Oils from Birch Wood

Postby Zymurgy Bob » Fri Feb 16, 2018 6:06 pm

Maybe this can be helpful, but the once used bourbon barrel oak that I use for aging our Mulligan goes through a process that involves boring 1" holes in the stave sections, using a 1" Forstner bit. While I was really after the treated stave sections for aging, the chips made by the Forstner bit work wonderfully well as part of the aging process.

This chip-making process obviously would work well with just about any wood.
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Re: Essentials Oils from Birch Wood

Postby The Baker » Fri Feb 16, 2018 10:54 pm

Zymurgy Bob wrote:Maybe this can be helpful, but the once used bourbon barrel oak that I use for aging our Mulligan goes through a process that involves boring 1" holes in the stave sections, using a 1" Forstner bit. While I was really after the treated stave sections for aging, the chips made by the Forstner bit work wonderfully well as part of the aging process.

This chip-making process obviously would work well with just about any wood.


Hi, folks,

Bob, this raises unexpected possibilities.

Recently I made a set of six wooden tasting trays. In the belief that there would be a big enough bit (for the brace and bit) or spade bit to recess holes into the wood to take the little glasses I had.

Not so!
We bought a special bit for $54, and had to drill small holes right through the wood so that the 'leader' section of the special bit would not pull that bit right through the wood. Anyway the tasting set is good and I bought some little 'watch-glasses' to cover the top of the glasses.

Back to the chip making: we had this expensive special bit (not a Forstner but I think it sort of does the same job) and never expected to use it again....
And now we can make our own aging 'wheels' with it!

Thanks,
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Re: Essentials Oils from Birch Wood

Postby taylor » Sat Feb 17, 2018 12:57 am

Well, perhaps this would help me in my quest with birch, but does anyone know how essential oils are distilled from sadlewood? I gather that this has been done for centuries.
Many thanks,
Taylor
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Re: Essentials Oils from Birch Wood

Postby The Baker » Sat Feb 17, 2018 1:57 am

taylor wrote:Well, perhaps this would help me in my quest with birch, but does anyone know how essential oils are distilled from sadlewood? I gather that this has been done for centuries.
Many thanks,
Taylor


Would that be Sandalwood?

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Re: Essentials Oils from Birch Wood

Postby catslab » Sat Feb 17, 2018 10:58 am

You have many ways to extract oils, water, steam, Co2, solvents.

Today most sandalwood companies use steam distillation in order to extract sandalwood oil. Steam distillation is a process in which steam heated at extremely high temperatures (usually around 140-212˚ F) is passed through the powdered wood. The steam releases the sandalwood essential oil that is locked within the cellular structure of the wood. The mixture of steam and oil then flows through a condenser and cools, yielding a layer of oil and a layer of water. The sandalwood essential oil separates from the hydrosol (floral water) rises to the top so it can then be collected. The distillation process for sandalwood oil takes anywhere from 14 to 36 hours, longer than for many other essential oils. Despite the fact that this method requires a longer process than other distillation methods, it’s known to produce superior quality oil, yielding 84.32% santalol (Sandalwood Research Network [SRN], source, 2010).

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Re: Essentials Oils from Birch Wood

Postby sasquatch » Sat Feb 17, 2018 1:55 pm

taylor wrote:Well, perhaps this would help me in my quest with birch, but does anyone know how essential oils are distilled from sadlewood? I gather that this has been done for centuries.
Many thanks,
Taylor


Different process for different materials.
Take cinnamon bark.
They do a C02 and a stream.
You can forgot the C02 because those machines are very pricey.
A couple hundred thousand dollars. :!:
So you are limited to steam.
You need a large boiler so you can hold large amounts of material suspended in a basket in the upper head. And enough water on the bottom to not run out during the cook off.
If you go with anything less then a banana box size of material you are wasting your time because it takes a lot to get a little.

Oh yeah, you will need an Essencier. I had mine custom made from a glass blower.
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