I moved to England from Germany when I was 15 years old and lived there for what were 6 wonderful years. Those memories of touring the British Isles and making friends with people whom I still consider family are among my most treasured memories.
We lived just south of Cambridge and one of our favorite places to visit in the summer was the Norfolk Lavender Farm about an hour northeast from home. You could watch the process of the lavender harvest and processing it into essential oils. They also had a gift shop where you could buy lavender seeds and a variety of lavender-scented products. It was such a peaceful and serene setting and we never grew tired of it.
Lavender is also a fun and delicious herb to cook and bake with. If you’ve never tried it you simply must. It imparts a flavor that can only be described as floral, woodsy and minty with a touch of thyme and rosemary.
Lavender has an assertive flavor so you’ll want to use it sparingly – always start with less. Lavender is also best paired with bright flavors for contrast. Lemon is the perfect flavor pairing.
As with this French Almond Cake with Lavender Lemon Glaze, I’m sure you’ll agree that the lavender-lemon combination is a match made in heaven!
I’ve been making a variety of refreshing non-alcoholic drinks the past few weeks and with the newly flowering lavender in my garden I couldn’t resist incorporating it into a classic lemonade.
You can use both fresh and dried lavender flowers and I’ll provide instructions for both.
Let’s get started!
If you use fresh lavender the process is quicker – simply use something like a cocktail muddler to crush the lavender. Alternatively you can use a mortar and pestle or something similar.
If using dried lavender, you’ll need to steep it like a tea by boiling the water called or in the recipe and pouring the boiling water over the dried lavender leaves, letting it steep for a few minutes, straining the flowers and then letting it cool.
There’s no right or wrong way to this – it comes down to personal preference and what you have available. Going the boiling water route also enables you to use honey instead of sugar for a different flavor profile.
Pictured below I’m using a muddler to crush the fresh lavender flowers.
Next stir in the fresh lemon juice and simple syrup.
Strain the lavender flowers.
Add ice and water, stir and serve with a sprig of fresh lavender and/or a slice of lemon.
- 2 teaspoons fresh unsprayed lavender flowers or 1 teaspoon dried lavender flowers
- 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- ¼ cup simple syrup (alternatively use one tablespoon honey if using dried lavender/boiling water, see instructions below)
- 6 ounces cold water
- Ice cubes
- If using fresh lavender: Place the lavender leaves in a glass and use something like a cocktail muddler or mortar and pestle to crush the lavender. Stir in the lemon juice and simple syrup.
- Strain out and discard the lavender flowers. Add ice and water to the liquid and serve with a sprig of fresh lavender and/or slice of lemon.
- If using dried lavender: Boil the water. Place the dried lavender leaves in a mug and pour the boiling water over them. Let it steep for a few minutes, strain out and discard the lavender flowers and let the liquid cool completely. If using honey, stir it in before the liquid has cooled. Otherwise, once the liquid has cooled, stir in the lemon juice and simple syrup, add the ice and serve with a sprig of fresh lavender and/or slice of lemon.
- This yields about one serving. For more servings simply double/quadruple the ingredients.