Glazed Lavender Lemon Cakes

A friend really wanted something lavender for her birthday, so this was the perfect opportunity to use my culinary lavender! I had bought this lavender while visiting Becker Vineyards in the Texas Hill country (Dr. Becker works with my dad, and they have a lovely lavender festival!). I hope to visit the lavender fields in France one day, but you’d be surprised how pretty Central Texas is.

B was a little weirded out by lavender (“Lavender is a scent, not a food!”) but he just hasn’t had a chance to appreciate the flavor. I told him he wasn’t gourmet enough – and he’s part French too!

I had no idea Lavender plants belonged to the mint family. There’s ornamental lavender and culinary lavender; most lavender varieties can be used in food, but English lavender is the most popular for cooking because it has the sweetest fragrance. (source)

Lavender can be a little bitter so you can’t add too much or your food will become soap. You can add it to sugar for fragrance or use it as a garnish. Interestingly, you can use lavender leaves and stems too, which can replace rosemary, but the only part which I have seen used is the flowers. (source)

I couldn’t find a recipe I liked so I made a lot of adaptations from Sally’s Baking Addiction – I wanted lavender and lemon together. The glaze didn’t show up as much as I wanted it to, but that’s a work in progress.

I try not to buy cut flowers even though they’re so pretty, since they die in a week. However lavender is great because it smells better when dried and it lasts so long too, so I splurged when I saw it on sale at Whole foods!

Glazed Lavender Lemon Cakes

1/2 cup  unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 and 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup milk
2 lemons, zested and juiced
2-3 teaspoons lavender

2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons lavender (set some aside for garnish)
3/4 cup powdered sugar.

CAKE: Preheat the oven to 350F.  Grease a muffin tray

Cream the butter and sugar together on medium-high speed in a large bowl with a mixer. Add eggs and vanilla and beat to combine. In a medium bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the large bowl with the wet ingredients and stir until just combined.  Mix in the milk, lemon zest and juice, and the lavender until just combined.

Spoon batter evenly into the muffin pan and bake for about 18-22 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.

GLAZE: For the glaze, mix the lemon juice, lavender, and powdered sugar until combined. Drizzle over the cooled cakes. Top with remaining lavender for garnish. Let the glaze harden, then serve. Enjoy!

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