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Lavender, the overlooked ingredient

Our small home grown dried Lavender pots are a fantastic way to liven up your cooking. Lavender has been over time, lost to the majority of us when cooking but is indeed one of the more essential ingredients in the kitchen. Lavender is one of the finest and loveliest of herbs. It is also fantastic for cooking, though it is underused and somewhat misunderstood when baking.


We are determined to help Lavender make a comeback to our kitchen and one of the ways we are doing is is by not only growing the bees favourite flower, but also by the cultivation, drying and preparing so that it is ready for use in your kitchen.



We use English Lavender which is, in our view, best for culinary use as the flavour is more mellow and less pungent than other varieties. Lavender can be added to salt and used to excellent effect with salads and new potatoes by tossing in butter.



'Lavender has an "androgynous" aroma and flavour – both savoury and sweet, with a distinct herbal edge, akin to rosemary and thyme (it makes a good "summer encapsulated" alternative to either) and is even more versatile for savoury treatments. Though, when the flower buds are infused with sugar, cream, butter or chocolate, endless evocative desserts open up.” (1)


One of our favourite recopies is that of the National Trusts Lavender Cake. We would recommend that you give it a go when you get a chance.


Our little home grown lavender pots are the ideal size for making the cake and give ample amount of lavender when cooking.


Lavender Cake


10mins (prep. time)

Cooking time: 45mins (cooking time)

Serves: Makes one 23cm round cake



Ingredients


• 350g margarine or butter

• 350g Caster sugar

• 350g Self Raising Flour

• 6 Eggs

• ½ tsp vanilla essence

• 1 ½ tsp milk

• 1 tbsp dried lavender flowers

• For Icing: 125g Icing sugar:

• Enough water to make thin paste

• ½ tsp dried Lavender flowers


Method


1. Pre-heat the oven to 170 degrees Celsius.

2. Cream margarine and sugar together until light and fluffy.

3. Add eggs slowly, adding the flour and mixing well.

4. Add the milk and vanilla essence.

5. Fold in the lavender flowers.

6. Put mixture in lined tin and bake 30-45 mins at 170 degrees Celsius until the knife comes out clean.

7. Leave to cool and make a water icing with the icing sugar. To do this, add 125 grams of icing sugar to 15ml of water and mix well

8. Once cooled, ice cake and sprinkle lavender flowers on top.


(1) https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/food-and-drink/features/eat-purple-english-lavender-is-perfect-for-cooking-both-savoury-and-sweet-8076919.html




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