While most of us know about the beauty and fragrance of Lavender, somehow we have forgotten that it is indeed an herb. An herb that may not be common place in American spice cabinets, it has been in use as a culinary herb for centuries. Most of us know of ‘herbs de Provence‘ or have seen it in finer stores and herb shops, but did you know that lavender is what sets it apart from other spice blends? One’s imagination is the only limit when cooking with this variable herb.
Lavender varies in taste just as it varies in appearance and aroma. The English Lavenders (L. angustifolia) are the prefered lavenders to use as culinary as they are milder, sweeter, and do not over-power the dish. Within these varieties there is still more variation when used as a culinary herb. Provence lavender, a hybrid known as a lavandin, is an exception to the rule. Because of its milder flavor, it is often used when English Lavender is not available, and some cooks even prefer it above Angustifolia.
Our personal favorite is our Signature Blend, made with a number of delicate English Lavenders. It has a sweet, yet floral note, and enhances dishes from soups, to meat, and even drinks and desserts.
All culinary lavender blends very well with citrus, mint, rosemary, sage, berries, fruit, meats, drinks, and one should use some caution to not use too much. Lavender should be a background flavor, not in the forefront, and when used in proportion enhances foods with a distinctive and mysterious flavor, while adding a lovely color to your dish.
Experiment with some of the recipes below, and see why lavender is finding its way back into the spice rack. It’s a welcome return! If you have a favorite Lavender Recipe not listed on this page, we would love to list it and give you credit! Email us: firstname.lastname@example.org
Credit for this recipe goes to: Sharon Shipley’s “The Lavender Cookbook”
Published by Running Press Book Publishers
(awesome cookbook, I highly recommend it!)