When you think lavender what images race through your mind? A light violet color, sweet scent, fields in Southern France, and serenity are what I picture. Cooking ingredient is the last thing that I think of.
The first time lavender came into my kitchen was in a packet of herbes de Provence. The herb mixture was most often used in fish or other savory dishes. Never did I imagine using lavender as an ingredient in sweet recipes. That was up until a few years ago when lavender appeared to become the hip ingredient in the food blogging community.
Initially it didn’t really appeal to me because I’m not much of a baker and sweets are an occasional treat for us. The other reason is that I had this idea in my head that the sweets would taste like perfume or the lavender essential oil that I used in the bath. But I was wrong because as long as you don’t overuse it that taste will not be there. After a few experiments I discovered that lavender is a great culinary ingredient.
As I mentioned before lavender makes up part of the herb mixture called herbes de Provence. It can also be infused with other ingredients to prepare a tisane or herbal tea, paired with cheeses, candied for cake decorating or mixed with sugar to create lavender sugar. My favorite sweet uses for this lightly floral ingredient are in biscuits, scones and muffins. I also love infusing it with lemon honey tea for a relaxing night time drink.
- 1¾ cups all purpose flour
- ¼ cup whole wheat flour
- 1 tbsp. baking powder
- ¼ tsp. baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 tsp white sugar (adjust to taste)
- zest from 1 small lemon
- ½ tsp dried lavender, grind in a mortar and pestle to small granules
- 4 tbsp. unsalted butter
- ¾ cup of buttermilk
- Preheat the oven to 428 f or 220 c. Sift the flour, salt, sugar, zest, lavender, baking powder and baking soda into a large bowl. Cut the butter into small pieces and place inside the bowl with the flour. Using either a pastry cutter or your hands work the butter into the flour mixture. Continue until it has becomes coarse crumbs. Little by little start adding the buttermilk and stopping to work it into the crumb until all of the milk has all been used.
- Gather the dough into a large even height piece. Use a cookie cutter to cut the biscuits. I cut 6 pieces but it will depend on the cookie cutter size you use. Place biscuits onto a cookie sheet and bake in center of oven for 15 minutes or until baked through. Allow to cool sightly before serving.
These biscuits are soft, sweet with scents of lemon zest and lavender buds. The outer crust is crumbly while the center is soft and moist. Served warm with softened butter and honey makes them great for breakfast or an accompaniment to your afternoon tea. These may not be the prettiest biscuits but they sure brought a bit of serenity with each bite.
Next time I bake with lavender it will also include chocolate. I hear chocolate pairs deliciously with lavender. Have you tried the combination, or what is your favorite sweet lavender recipe? Do share in the comments below.
Other great lavender uses and recipes.
– Joy The Baker’s Lavender Vanilla Sugar Recipe
– Lavender & Vanilla Marshmallows by Drawings Under The Table
– Pear and Lavender Butter by The Musician Who Cooks
– Flavored Simple Syrups by Laura Friendly
– The Purple Haze of Provence by The Hedonista
– Molly’s Sketchbook: Lavender Sachets by The Purl Bee