The powerful aroma of the leaves indicates that they doubtless have overlapping benefits with the flowers, which is why I enjoy including them in salves, balms, soaks, and other DIY projects.It’s also enjoyable just to pick a handful of leaves to rub between my fingers and sniff when I’m walking around my garden – they smell so good!To harvest, snip off the top tips of the plant while the leaves are green, avoiding the tougher woody section found further down the stem.Once dry, store them in a brown paper bag, or a glass jar tucked into a dark cabinet.Heat over a low burner for a few hours, keeping a close eye that the water doesn’t evaporate out.For a slower, but stronger infusion: Cap the jar of dried leaves and oil and tuck away in a cabinet for around 4 to 6 weeks, shaking occasionally as you remember to.Use lavender leaf infused oil to make this easy DIY sinus and headache balm.Blend equal parts of fresh chopped green herbs and Epsom salt in a mini food processor.Spread the green colored salt over a sheet of wax paper and allow to air dry for a day or two, then crumble or re-blend the mix to an even texture.If desired, stir in 1 to 2 tablespoons of baking soda, to help soften the water, and a few drops of lavender essential oil, for scent.For easier cleanup, pour the bath soak into a muslin tea bag or old sock before adding to the tub.mixed with an equal amount of water + pinch of cornstarch to make a glass & window cleaner.Try finely chopping the smaller leaves and sprinkling over potato dishes, or include in marinades, herbal spice blends, or vinaigrettes.You can use the infused oil to make lip balms, bath bombs, lotions, creams, and soap. .
What Are the Benefits of Eating Lavender?
There are many health benefits of eating lavender, including upping your intake of vitamins and minerals and protecting your body from antioxidants and stress.Tip Lavender health benefits include increasing your intake of certain vitamins and alleviating stress and insomnia, but be aware of any possible drug interactions.A 100 g serving of lavender introduces 49 calories into your diet as well as 1 g of fat.Lavender is typically not consumed alone, so factor these calories into the foods to which you add lavender.Iron for Healthy Blood.Eat lavender to increase your iron intake.One serving has 2 mg of iron, a considerable portion of the 8 to 11 mg you should consume each day.Eating lavender has no known interferences with medications, although you may want to proceed with caution if you take sedatives or medication to treat high blood pressure. .
Culinary Lavender, Whats Cooking America
In today’s upscale restaurants, fresh edible flowers are making a comeback as enhancements to both the flavor and appearance of food.As a member of the same family as many of our most popular herbs, it is not surprising that lavender is edible and that it’s use in food preparation is also returning.Culinary Lavender is a member of the mint family and is close to rosemary, sage, and thyme.In ancient times lavender was used for mummification and perfume by the Egyptian’s, Phoenicians, and peoples of Arabia.The Greeks and the Romans bathed in lavender scented water and it was from the Latin word “lavo” meaning “to wash” that the herb took it’s name.During the First World War, nurses bathed soldiers’ wounds with lavender washes.To this day, the French continue to send baby lamb to graze in fields of lavender, so their meat will be tender and fragrant.Rubber bands on the stem can be attached to hooks hanging from the ceiling easily.To retain the flavor and fragrance of dried lavender, store them in glass or pottery containers with tight fitting lids so the oils will not escape from the flowers.Due to its excellent healing and analgesic properties, lavender can provide instant relief from heat rash or red and sore skin.Make a lotion using 12 drops of lavender essential oil in 1 tablespoon of distilled water.The key to cooking with culinary lavender is to experiment; start out with a small amount of flowers, and add more as you go.NOTE: Adding too much lavender to your recipe can be like eating perfume and will make your dish bitter.Grind the lavender in a herb or coffee grinder or mash it with mortar and pestle.Flowers look beautiful and taste good too in a glass of champagne, with chocolate cake, or as a garnish for sorbets or ice creams.Harvest flowers as you would fruit, selecting those that look most perfectly ready, with the fullest color, and passing over any that seem wilted or less ripe.Cutting the lavender flowers is best done in the morning when the dew has evaporated and before the heat of the day.If necessary, layer blooms carefully between moist paper towels in the refrigerator until meal time. .
How to Cook With Lavender so Your Food Doesn't Taste Like Soap
Test Kitchen contributor Jessie Damuck just developed an excellent lemon-lavender pound cake (a perfect addition to an Easter brunch, I’d say).No matter what you plan to do with it, make sure to buy “culinary lavender.” Like coconut oil, lavender is produced for uses other than cooking.We like to use lavender as an infusion, so either grind it (say, with sugar for baked goods) or strain it out of a liquid (cream or syrup) before using.In baking, be sure to use a light touch or balance its low notes with something bright like lemon juice and zest.A few more ideas if this got the creative juices flowing: Infuse simple syrup with a sprinkling of lavender and use to sweeten iced tea, lemonade, or even to flavor meringue.Make your own dry blend of herbs and flowers (we like lavender with mint and rosemary) and rub on lamb chops or chicken wings before grilling. .
What makes lavender "culinary"? And other questions you've always
Lavender highlights the richness of fruits, compliments herbs and peppery dishes, adds intrigue and depth to meat and vegetable roasts, and enhances sweet desserts with unique floral and sweet notes.A great go-to culinary lavender cultivar is ‘Buena Vista’ and ‘Folgate’.Lavandins (L. x.
intermedia) is edible, as is all lavender, but its flavor can be resinous and pungent.A Lavandin type will make a dish taste bitter.First, we begin by harvesting lavender at the optimal time for culinary use.The buds then need to be “cleaned” – sifted through through screens to remove leaves and bits of stem.This extra step, cleaning the buds, is more work, but the end result is dried lavender buds that are free of stems and debris you wouldn’t want in your food.While it’s safe to have some bits of stem and leaves in a tea blend, these other parts of the plant have a much more pungent and bitter taste, vs. the pleasant floral notes of the lavender flower.Lavender has a strong flavor, especially when it’s high-quality: organically grown, fresh, and properly processed and stored.You know you’ve used the perfect amount when you can just barely detect the floral notes. .
The Difference Between Lavender & Culinary Lavender
Known for the sweet fragrance produced by their purple flowers, lavenders may be used for both ornamental and culinary purposes.Lavender as an evergreen shrub grows upright and produces sweet-smelling, colorful flowers.When kept outdoors, lavenders thrive in full sunlight and should be grown in well-drained soil – these plants do not do well in areas that are particularly wet or dry.The leaves and stems of lavender plants can be used for culinary purposes, but the flowers, in particular, give dishes a subtly sweet, citrus flavor. .
Lavender Leaves :: Ideas and Recipes
You will be receiving lavender leaves from Begin Again Farms in your CSA share this week.I find the flavor of the leaves to be a bit more mild than the flowers but I am sure it depends on the variety.Lavender works well with many different flavors – cream/ice cream, honey, lemon, orange, rosemary, sugar, vinegar and walnuts to name a few.I am focusing on culinary ideas for using lavender but the leaves can also be used for home and aromatherapy purposes.Recipe notes: while I haven’t tried it, I think this syrup would be great in lemonade, iced tea or in any number of cocktails.I used this in a fizzy drink – I added a couple of tablespoons of syrup along with about 8 ounces of sparkling water, a good squeeze of lemon juice and lots of ice.Put all ingredients in a small saucepan and place over medium-high heat.Recipe notes: 1) the broiled feta part of the recipe is from Cook’s Illustrated; 2) you can also mix the vinegar with extra virgin olive oil and use as a salad dressing; 3) serve the feta with crackers or warmed pita bread.Place the vinegar, lavender and shallots in a small saucepan and heat over medium until simmering.Pat the feta dry with paper towels and place on a foil-lined baking sheet (or in a broiler-safe gratin dish).Using a hand or stand mixer, beat the sugar and butter together until fully incorporated and airy, about 1 minute.Add the lavender, lemon zest, vanilla and salt to the sugar and butter and mix until incorporated.With the mixer running, slowly add the flour over low speed until just incorporated, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.Transfer to a large piece of plastic wrap and form into a rough 1-1/2″ log.Remove dough from plastic wrap and carefully slice into 1/3″ rounds and evenly space on the baking sheet.); 2) there are a million ways to make Herbs de Provence – the recipe below is based off of what I had on hand.Many recipes include savory, marjoram and/or sage as well, so feel free to add those too if readily available.1-1/2 pounds small red potatoes (about 1-1/2 inches in diameter), unpeeled, halved.Arrange potatoes in single layer, cut side down, in 12-inch nonstick skillet.Add water, butter, garlic, Herbs de Provence, and salt and bring to simmer over medium-high heat.Reduce heat to medium, cover, and simmer until potatoes are just tender, about 15 minutes.Remove lid and use slotted spoon to transfer garlic to cutting board.Increase heat to medium-high and vigorously simmer, swirling pan occasionally, until water evaporates and butter starts to sizzle, 15 to 20 minutes. .