"It is well to remember that the entire population of the universe, with one trifling exception, is composed of others." A.Holmes

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Spot on Lavender, and Lavender Shortbread

~~~It's that time of year when I remember I don't have much time left to harvest my herbs before the late fall and winter weather set in. I also seem to have herb books and magazines all around the house to remind me of just what I was going to do with the herbs this year. Right now I am trying to get my dried lavender put away in paper bags before it is too dusty .~~~Here is a recipe for lavender shortbread. I slightly changed this recipe I received from my sister-in-law Jean. "....you can add the fresh or dried flower (lavender) to homemade soaps, cosmetics, potpourris,and sachets, or use them in cookies, vinegars, jellies and teas." from CHINA BAYLES BOOK OF DAYS , by Susan Wittig Albert click on picture to enlarge recipe ~~~I scored the shortbread before baking, with this nifty square cookie cutter, also from my sister-in-law Jean. After scoring the dough, prick it with a fork, then bake. "Bury a couple of fresh lavender flowers in the sugar bowl or add a few to a jar of honey." The HERB COMPANION May 1999 ~~~Don't you just love these square cookie cutters. I cut baking powder biscuit dough with these. Kind of nice for biscuits filled with egg salad, tuna, or cheese. "Add a teaspoon of crumbled lavender flowers to the filling for apple pie or apple crisp." The HERB COMPANION , May 1999 ~~~Here is my shortbread ready to go into the oven. Note that I did not add lavender TO the shortbread dough. I am trying something different to get a subtle taste of lavender. "The lore of lavender is filled with stories of its powerful influences on love, war, and politics. In the kitchen , however, delicacy is lavender's contribution.Just a little goes a long way for most people; " COOKING WITH LAVENDER , May 1999 issue of The HERBAL COMPANION ~~~I have added a few sprigs of lavender to the sealed container my shortbread cookies will be stored in. " Lavender is ageless and regal like a grandmother, fresh and lively like a teenager. Modest and demure like a Victorian lady's lacy sachet, yet as sumptuous as an ancient Roman's scented bath. We may view lavender as a gentle flower, but it went to world wars as an antiseptic and has long been a heavyweight in the fragrance industry. Indeed, this plant of antiquity is as popular now as it ever was, still the stuff of poetry and love affairs but also a sturdy addition to the landscape." BEST of The LAVENDERS fr. April / May 1998 issue of HERB COMPANION ~~~"The herbalist Gerard prescribed it ( lavender ) to bathe the temples of those with a 'light migram or swimming of the brain'. One Sir James Smith also told of an alcoholic tincture created 'for those who wish to indulge in a dram under the appearance of elegant medicine.' " from THE COMPLETE BOOK OF HERBS by Leslie Bremness
~~~The addition of sprigs of lavender to the sealed cookie container works . Fairly quickly too. Delicately scented shortbread and tea.....very pleasant.~~~ Lavender Herb Tea ( makes 4 cups )
Shoo away the cares of the day with this calming tea.
1 teaspoon dried lavender flowers
1 teaspoon dried chamomile flowers
1 teaspoon green tea leaves
1/2 teaspoon dried yarrow flowers
4 cups boiling water Place the herbs in a warmed teapot. Pour in the boiling water, cover, and steep for 3 minutes. Strain and serve , sweetened with a little honey if desired. from COOKING WITH LAVENDER , May 1999 issue of The HERB COMPANION ~~~"..lavender will provide sweet, welcome relief from headaches and stress.Take a basket to the herb garden and pick the flower spikes just as the buds are opening. If that headache is really getting you down, sniff lavender often or try some lavender tea." from CHINA BAYLES BOOK OF DAYS , by Susan Wittig Albert ~~~I use my lavender. I dry it, then place it in seldom used cupboards, put it in paper bags and place in closets, cook with it, decorate with it. When I have a LOT of dried lavender I will place it on top of the logs near the fireplace and sometimes use as fire starter....sometimes I give it away dried and with bows tied around it, as the package decoration on a gift......The lavender I have growing in my gardens is hardy, and comes in so many variations of purple, blue, lavender , pink and white. I have some growing in a big pot, and it too does well. All in all, the perfect plant for me. It is forgiving if not watered often and thrives amidst the weeds. ~~~ "Sprinkle several drops of lavender oil on a small bundle of dried lavender and place it above the radiator or heating vent to fill a room with scent." COOKING WITH LAVENDER The HERB COMPANION May 1999

5 comments:

Daisy said...

What a great idea to flavor the shortbread that way, Kathy. That seems like a good way to do it so it won't be overpowering. Those cookie cutters with the handles on them are cool! :)

noble pig said...

So beautiful, I would hope you would post the recipe. Thank you!

Gooseshooter said...

Kathy-

Have you made this for us before? I don't remember. But, would love to taste it.

KathyB. said...

Daisy, I think I will try the same process with lemon balm too. Yes, my sister-in-law finds the best gifts. She really thinks about the person she is giving to.

Noble Pig, Now I am going to begin trying several recipes for Scottish Shortbread....there are quite a few !

Gooseshooter, I have only made this for a women's tea I hosted here, so you (Kathleen) probably have tasted it, I don't think I have served it in mixed company > (that phrase sounds questionable doesn't it ? )

LindaSueBuhl said...

Neat way to flavor the shortbread - I don't have enough lavendar to do a lot with yet - but at the rate it is growing next year ought to be a bumper crop! So relaxing - I'm going to try one of those tubes filled with buckwheat or rice and a lot of dried lavendar for a neck pillow when I'm restless. Beautiful Post -