Lavender Cookies are a special treat for Mother’s Day or other celebrations. While that wonderful lavender scent may make you think of a potpourri or hand cream, lavender adds flavor to cookies or other baked goods.
I found fresh lavender at the farmers’ market and dried culinary lavender at Penzey’s.
There are a couple of tricks to follow when cooking with lavender so your dish doesn’t taste like soap. A little goes a long way, so no matter how much you may like lavender, you only need a small amount. As with any herb, you’ll use more fresh than dried lavender. So if the recipe calls for a Tablespoon of fresh lavender, use a teaspoon of dried lavender. Grind the lavender in the sugar for full flavor without biting into leaves or seeds.
Use lavender in whipped cream, in cakes, or even on chicken.
This recipe, from James Beard, is a good one to use if this is your first experience cooking with lavender. The cookie is a shortbread that is cut into rectangle shapes. It’s a good balance for your morning coffee and delicate enough for afternoon tea. Crush or grind the lavender into the granulated sugar. Cream the butter with granulated sugar and confectioners’ sugar. Sift together flour and cake flour, and add to butter mixture. Roll out into a rectangle. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for 4 hours. Cut the dough into small bars and bake on parchment paper covered sheet pan.
- 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh lavender or 1 teaspoon dried lavender
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup powdered sugar
- 1 cup butter (2 sticks) softened
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1 cup cake flour
- decorating crystal sugar
- Grind or crush lavender with granulated sugar. Cream together butter, granulated sugar with lavender and powdered sugar and salt until thoroughly combined about 3 minutes. In a separate bowl, sift together the all purpose and cake flours. Mix the flour mixture into the butter mixture in 3 additions, scraping down the sides of the bowl in between each addition.
- Roll out the dough into a ½ inch thick rectangle. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Cut the dough into 2 X 1 inch bars and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake the cookies until just golden at the edge, about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and immediately sprinkle with decorating crystal sugar. Let cool completely before serving.