Herb of the Month “Lavender”

French lavender Norfolk Lavender - French Lavender English Lavender
What I look like: There are many different varieties some of the most popular are the Sweet Lavender (36″ height, Purple blooms), French Lavender (24″ height, pale blue lavender color) Hidcote lavender (24″ height, dark purple), Munstead lavender (12″ height, deep blue-purple) , Goodwin’s Creek Lavender (24″-36″ height, lavender color).

History:Lavender comes from the Latin word “lavare” which means “to wash”. In ancient times lavender was used for perfume and baths. Queen Elizabeth used lavender as a perfume. She also drank lavender tea to ease her migraines. Queen Victoria used lavender to wash floors, and furniture. She would put lavender among her linens and used it to freshen the air. Even today, the French send their lambs to graze in lavender fields, to make their meat tender and fragrant.

Uses: English lavender is most frequently used in cooking because it has the sweetest fragrance. The flavor of lavender flowers increases when dried. A little lavender goes a long way, so start with a small amount and add to your taste. The best time to harvest lavender blooms is when the flowers begin to open up. This is when the essential oils are the greatest. Lavender is a very versatile herb not only can it be used for flavoring food but it also has some medicinal properties as well and is also used in aromatherapy. Medicinally it can help ease stress and headaches simply because of the scent.

Availability: Very easy to find. Lavender is carried at Bluebonnet Herb Farms throughout the year

Extra Tip: Lavender’s aroma is loved by bees. When planted in vegetable gardens and orchards, the shrub enhances pollination.

Lavender Mint Chip Cookies

The mint chips, lavender and chocolate in these cookies create a new and very interesting flavor.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cups butter
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 cups flour
  • 3/4 cup cocoa
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 cup Andes Crème De Menthe baking chips
  • 6 tsp. of ground lavender

Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs and vanilla, mix. Combine the flour, baking soda, salt, cocoa and ground lavender. Add to the butter-egg mixture – beat well for one minute. Add pecans and chips.

Mix well, and spoon onto un-greased cookie sheet 3 inches apart. Bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 minutes until the cookies look puffy with cracks on top. They should fall and flatten as soon as you take them out of the oven. Do not over bake.

Recipe Provided by: Chappell Hill Lavender Farm

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