Although lavender is best known as an intense floral fragrance, this herb has a range of surprising culinary uses that can be implemented in both sweet and savory dishes. The dried buds should be used sparingly given the strong flavor when over used in your recipe. Make sure the label states culinary lavender.
To make brownies, scones, muffins, sweet breads, cakes, cupcakes, lemon bars and homemade jams, use 2 tsp of culinary lavender that has been pulverized in a food processor or well blended in a mortar and pestle into your favorite recipe or box mix.
When working with a recipe such as cheesecake, ice cream, crème brulee, icings, etc add the culinary dried lavender buds to the milk before scalding, let steep, then strain out the buds.
Culinary lavender buds can be infused into liquids: water, vodka, simple syrup for cocktails, teas, coffees by simply adding to the liquid and let set overnight or for days, then strain.
Shawnee Hills Lavender Lemonade -Yes this is the recipe we serve at the farm!
Lavender Simple Syrup: Combine 1 cup of sugar, 2/3 cup water and 2 tsp culinary dried lavender bud in a saucepan and stir while bringing to a boil. Remove from heat, cover and let steep for 30 minutes. Strain the buds and discard. Cool the syrup. Makes 1 cup of syrup. Store in frig until use. Add one cup of the lavender syrup with 1 package of Kool-aid lemonade and 2 quarts of water. Recipe can easily be doubled.
Lavender Whipped Cream: Stir together whipping cream with 2T dried culinary lavender buds and leave overnight in the frig. Next day remove or strain all lavender buds then whip the cream.
Lavender Sugar: In a food processor finely chop 2 T culinary dried lavender flowers. Add 1 cup of sugar. Blend and store in an airtight container. Use with dessert recipes.
Lavender Crème Brûlée: In your favorite recipe, add 2T dried culinary lavender to the cream before heating. Let set and strain the lavender from the creme to give your recipe a wonderful taste of lavender.
Lavender Lemonade: Use any lemonade mix either frozen or powder and make according to the instructions. Fill a tea ball with culinary lavender buds and drop into the lemonade. Let steep for 1 hour and the lavender will infuse into the lemonade. Use one small filled tea ball per 1 gallon of lemonade.
Lavender Cookies: Grind 3 ½ T dried culinary lavender buds and 2 cups sugar into powder in food processor. Cream 1 cup butter. Add ground sugar and lavender, 3 beaten eggs and 1 t vanilla and beat well. Stir in 3 ½ cups flour, 2 t baking powder, ½ t baking soda and ½ cup of milk. Use small cookie scoop to make uniform size cookies. Bake on cookie sheet with parchment paper for 8 to 10 minutes at 350 degrees. Ice with a buttercream frosting if desired.
Lavender Honey: Warm 2 cups of your favorite honey. Stir in 1 tsp of dried culinary lavender buds. Let sit 30 minutes then strain the buds while still warm.