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lavender blossoms - photo by:gourmetsleuth.com

Cooking With Culinary Lavender Blossoms

The name "lavender" is Latin from the word "lavare", and means to wash.

 

The Romans used lavender to scent their bath as well as medicinally. They also used the dried flowers to scent and flavor jellies as well as other sweets.

Article by: Barbara Bowman


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History and Lore

Lavender is native to the Mediterranean. One of the major producers of culinary lavender today is Holland.

Lavender Substitutes

You can substitute a few drops of Parfait Amour (a lavender-flavored liqueur) for dried lavender.

Medicinal Uses

Once source (Herbs & Herb Gardening by Jessica Houdret) states that the flowers can be steeped in water and the infusion used as a compress to relieve headaches. It is also used externally as an antiseptic.

Culinary Uses

Lavender has become a popular ingredient for cooking for both sweet and savory dishes. Desserts such as creme brulee are scented with lavender and main courses like lamb and enhanced with the flower. See our recipes section for suggestions.

Lavender Sugar

Lavender sugar is easy to make at home.  Bruise dried lavender flowers and add them to superfine or confectioners sugar. Store in an airtight jar until used. Use a sieve to remove flowers before use. Add the scented sugar to cakes, meringues or other sweets for a delicate flavor.

Buy and Store

Dried lavender can be purchased health food stores and some "gourmet" shops. Do not purchase lavender to be used in cooking from a craft shop unless the specify that it can be used for food. Culinary lavender grown for non-food use may contain high levels of toxic pesticides.

To store, keep in an airtight container and store in a cool, dry location.

Buy Online

Buy lavender products online at GourmetSleuth.com

    

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Culinary Lavender Recipes

Grown Your Own Lavender

Lavender plants can be found in most nurseries.  The plants are easy to grow and are actually tollerant to a fair amount of abuse.  Lavender stalks can be trimmed off then hung upside to dry in the sun.  Once dry the blossoms can be removed from the stalks and stored in jars or tins.

Lavender Nutrition

Lavender 100 grams
Calories49
Total fat (g)1
Saturated fat (g)0
Monounsaturated fat (g)0
Polyunsaturated fat (g)0
Dietary fiber (g)0
Protein (g)1
Carbohydrate (g)11
Sodium (mg)6
Vitamin A (i.u.)287
Calcium (mg)215
Iron (mg)2
Vitamin C (mg)12