Sunday, June 1, 2008

It's Lavender Season

If you have never used lavender in cooking, here are some ideas and recipes to try. It is important to use organically grown, culinary lavender for obvious reasons. There are some types of lavender that taste "soapy". Make sure you have one that has a more "floral" or "fruity" taste, especially if introducing lavender-laced foods for the first time, to family and friends who may already be skeptical. Basically, there are three ways to use Lavender in cooking:

1. Lavender Sugar

Leave lavender in sugar for 1 week, strain and use sugar in other recipes

2. Lavender Infusion

Steep in water, oil or vinegar, then used infused liquid in other recipes

3. Lavender as Dried Herb

Substitute in recipes where you would normally use herbs such as
Rosemary or Thyme

Easy Recipes:

Lavender Lemonade
Lavender Lemon-Ginger Dressing
Lavender Roasted Beets
Lavender Roasted Potatoes
Lavender Scones

Lavender Festivals occur all over the country. A couple of them that I know about are:

Here in Sonoma County, California, Sonoma Lavender will have its Lavender Festival Saturday and Sunday, June 14 and 15. It's a small festival put on by one grower, but I've been going for years and I always learn something new. That's where I had Lavender Lemonade for the first time and it was sublime. It not only refreshes, but relaxes you. You feel like you've had a glass of wine, but no alcohol so no need for a designated driver, Ha! ha! I do make a Lavender Rosemary Cordial, which contains vodka and brandy, but that's another story.

The Lavender Festival in Sequim, Washington is huge. I hope to go up there this year.

In Sequim, Washington, the Lavender Festival will be Friday, Saturday and Sunday, July 18, 19 & 20.


Chuck Marunde said...

Lavender season is a great time here in Sequim. This is a great time of the year to take a little drive and visit us. I love it here. Raised my family here, and can't wait to get some more great photos of the lavender fields this summer.

Marion said...

I have always grown Lavender, wherever I am. It will be more of a challenge here in Northern Interior of BC, but I plan on persevering.

I have used lavender in cooking for years; I like your hint to use the kinds that are more floral or fruity.

I make a shortbread type Lavender cookie that is made with fresh lavender. I love them...with a cup of lavender/white tea there is nothing better.

I can't wait to read about your cats!

savvygray said...

I have a bit of lavender in the yard and never knew how to use it. Do you use the flower while in full bloom or dry it first? Was unable to open your recipes.

Liara Covert said...

I read a recipe for lavendar ice cream and this struck me as being a marvelous idea! To dry lavender is uplifting. Options also exist to tempt the palette.