Cooking With Lavender
Lavender has been used in the kitchen since the middle ages. This versatile herb adds a subtle floral flavour to sweet and savoury dishes alike. It can be used directly in a recipe or as an attractive garnish.
When choosing culinary lavender, look for an English Lavender, or lavandula angustifolia. The sweet fragrance and low camphor make English lavender ideal in the kitchen.
A potent herb, lavender can quickly overpower other flavours so it's important to remember that a little goes a long way! The potency of these tiny flowers increases as the buds are dried so if a recipe calls for 3 tsp of fresh lavender buds, try using 1 tsp dried buds.
Tips for cooking with lavender:
- Try grinding lavender buds in a coffee grinder, food processor, or with a mortar and pestle to add directly to a recipe. Try adding a pinch to your cookie and cake recipes, or as a rub on chicken or lamb.
- Infuse lavender into the liquid portion of a recipe by heating the liquid and steeping lavender buds in it for 5 to 20 mins, depending on desired taste. Try 1/4 tsp lavender buds per cup of liquid.
- An easy way to add lavender to your cooking is to create lavender sugar. Grind lavender buds together with sugar and store in your freezer to use in cookies, cakes, icings and more. Use 1 tsp dried lavender buds per cup of sugar.
- For savoury dishes, try lavender salt - 1 part dried lavender to 10 parts salt, grind together and use as needed
- Change it up a bit! Toast lavender buds to remove the high floral notes for use in savoury dishes. 1 to 2 mins in a pan over medium heat is all that is needed.