Sunday, September 20, 2020

Lavender Loaf Cake



 


A Lovely Lavender Cake Loaf


One of the joys of my Colorado gardens is lavender. It seems to like our dry climate, and the best part of all is that my daily visiting deer and rabbits don't eat it! I also love its pretty feathery flowers and sublime scent. It is one of the most successful things I've planted and as a perennial comes back year after year. 

Lavender is a new commercial cash crop for the state of Colorado, especially on our Western Slope. Lavender is traditionally grown in the mountainous regions of the Mediterranean and in Northern Africa, as it prefers a hot and dry climate with plenty of sunshine. It also does well in Colorado, as we get over 300 sunny days a year and certain areas have the sandy, well-draining soil that lavender loves to grow in.  Almost every year the Denver Botanic Garden at Chatfield holds a Lavender Festival--click here--to read a blog post about that. The garden grows nineteen different varieties of lavender in colors from blue to pink to white. The festival includes lavender demonstrations, live music, craft and food vendors, farm tours, and activities for children, but it sadly had to be canceled this year due to the virus.  Hopefully, it will be able to be held again next summer.



I planted lavender near walkways in my front yard so that I brush against it when I walk in and out of my house and smell its lovely scent. In my home's backyard, it gets more sun and grows thick and tall. I've seen many bees and hummingbirds visit it and in autumn tiny little birds sit in the lavender bushes and eat the seeds that have formed inside the lavender buds.  I always leave a bunch of lavender stems behind when I harvest it for that reason.




After blooming, I cut the lavender stalks and allow them to dry in a cool place.  I usually hang them in my north-facing garage which is always cool. When dried, I pull off the little buds and save them in a jar. It is a delightful job as it smells so good as I do this!  When my jar is filled I save the excess in small drawstring organza material bags and use them as sachets.

Dried lavender buds can be used to flavor many foods. Since the lavender flavor intensifies when the herb is dried, the dried buds should be used sparingly. Lavender can be ground into sugar and used in butter cookies or it can be infused in cream for lavender-scented whipped cream or ice cream. Herbes de Provence is a combination of thyme, marjoram, rosemary, oregano, savory, and often lavender, and goes wonderfully with lamb, or grilled or roasted chicken.

I like to add dried lavender to cakes and muffins. It tastes especially good when accompanied by another flavoring such as vanilla, lemon, or almond.  I love lavender so much I have a whole Pinterest board devoted to it--click here--that has many lavender ideas, recipes, growing tips, plus some beautiful scenic photos of it and lavender fields.

One of my favorite lavender recipes is a simple but delicious Lavender Loaf Cake, a slice of which is perfect as a not overly sweet treat with coffee or tea.  Recipe to follow...




Lovely Lavender Loaf Cake



Ingredients:

3/4 cup buttermilk
2 Tsp dried lavender or 1 Tbsp. fresh lavender, finely chopped 
6 Tbsp. butter softened
1 cup white sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt

Instructions:

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour a 9×5 inch loaf pan.

Combine the buttermilk and lavender in a small saucepan over medium heat. Heat to a simmer, then remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.

In a medium bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in the egg until the mixture is light and fluffy; add in vanilla. Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt and stir into the creamed mixture alternately with the milk and lavender until just blended.

Pour into the prepared pan.

Bake for 45-50 minutes in the preheated oven.

 Cool in pan 20 minutes on a wire rack; remove from pan and allow to cool completely.

You can dust with powdered sugar or add a glaze icing if desired, but I like to serve plain. This cake has a tender and moist crumb, almost like a pound cake, and a very delicate hint of lavender which makes it very enticing!  I hope you will enjoy it!

Stay happy, safe, and healthy!

You can also find me on
 I'm linking this post to some of the following blog events:

 Mosaic Monday, All SeasonsBlue Monday, Through My Lens MondayLittle Cottage Link PartyHearth, and Soul Link PartyYou Are the Star Blog Hop, Inspire Me MondayHome Matters Linky Party,  Good Random FunNature NotesGrand SocialTravel Photos, Happiness Is HomemadeOver the MoonCreate, Bake, Make Our World TuesdayRuby TuesdayTuesday Turn AboutTuesdays With A TwistLet's Keep In TouchWordless Wednesday on a Tuesday,  Party in Your PJ'sWordless WednesdayNanahood WWOh My Heartsie Girl's Wonderful Wednesday, Your Whims WednesdayWednesday My Corner of the WorldWonderful Wednesday Little Things ThursdayThankful ThursdayThursday Encouraging Hearts and Home,  Thursday Thinking Out Loud, Friendship FridaysFriday Features Linky Party, Skywatch FridayPink Saturday

Bookmark and Share

32 comments:

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

I can almost smell the lovely aroma as you brush against your plants! Wonderful. The cake looks and sounds absolutely scrumptious! Yummm. I have found myself baking again occasionally; for health reasons we almost never eat dessert at home ... in “the good old days” (pre Covid ) we would have an occasional treat at a favorite restaurant ! ( of course in the real olden days, when our children were small I baked regularly). Anyway, now that restaurants are not a regular part of our life, and we still need occasional treats (perhaps more than ever) I have rediscovered my pie and cake pans ))...so thanks for this recipe. (Our local farm market sells lavender ... we went to a festival near here a couple of years ago.,. Apparently it’s an adaptable plant as our climate couldn’t be more different!)

eileeninmd said...

Hello Pat,

Your Lavender Loaf looks delicious. I may try growing Lavender next season. It love the scent and the pretty blooms. Thanks for sharing the recipe. Take care, stay well! Enjoy your day, have a happy new week!

Penny from Enjoying The Simple Things said...

I love lavender. Your cake looks and sounds yummy!

Carol @Comfort Spring Station said...

your cake looks yummy!

Jeanie said...

I need to plant lavender next year. All my plants have died. (Do you let yours winter outdoors? I think your winters might be like ours and I've never had luck with that). The recipe looks delish and even if my lavender won't winter, I can certainly grab some buds from potted plants if need be! I'd never "tasted" lavender until I bought a lavender cookie at a mill last year and it was glorious. This cake -- yum!

EricaSta said...

Thank you for sharing this delicious recipe. We have some lavender in our garden. I sew little pillows filled with them and put the pillow between the underwear in the drawer.

Have a good week. Happy MosaicMonday

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

Well, you know that I love lavender but I have never baked with it. How fragrant and tasty this must be! Thanks for the recipe. Hope the air clears and you have a good week!

Tanza Erlambang said...

cake looks absolutely delicious.... make me hungry.
thank you for sharing the recipe

Magical Mystical Teacher said...

Why, yes, I did see your blue bowl--and it's lovely!

MarilynsTreats said...

My granddaughter grows lavender. It is doing great on the house. She takes it on the deck everyday and brings it in at night.

********************************************************
Thank you for sharing at #OverTheMoon. Pinned and shared. Have a lovely week. I hope to see you at next week’s party too! Please stay safe and healthy. Come party with us at Over The Moon! Catapult your content Over The Moon! @marilyn_lesniak @EclecticRedBarn
********************************************************

ellen b. said...

Such a pretty loaf. I bet it made your house's aroma lovely!

LV said...

Lots of nice and interesting things in your part of the world.

Lydia C. Lee said...

I just planted some lavender. I hope it grows. I love lavender scones with lavender cream. So decadent!

Ruth Hiebert said...

That sounds interesting . I knew that you could use lavender in cooking and baking, but I have never tried it.

Vee said...

It is a work of art! I'd rather put lavender on me than in me, but that cake looks like an exception. 😊

Lady Fi said...

Delicious!

Tom said...

...I'd prefer to smell lavender and not eat it.

NCSue said...

That is a lovely cake. I bet it smells and tastes heavenly!
Thanks for sharing at https://image-in-ing.blogspot.com/2020/09/hummingbird-haven.html

stevebethere said...

That looks and sounds great but the big question is have you saved me some heheh!

Have a safe lavenderloafcaketasic week 😷😷😷

Donna @ Modern on Monticello said...

I definitely learned a few things about growing lavender from this post. I never knew what climate it prefers for growing. I'm sure the bread is delicious. Thanks for sharing again this week at #HomeMattersParty

Lowcarb team member said...

Your lavender loaf looks wonderful, so nice to see buttermilk in the recipe.
Enjoy your week.

All the best Jan

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Tom....doubt you will see this, but Lavender is an herb and has its own wonderful flavor. It not only smells great it has a pleasant taste.

Ciao Chow Linda said...

Your lavendar cake sounds delicious Pat, and you're reminding me of some lavendar I have in my kitchen cupboard, given to me by one of my cousins in Italy, who grows lavendar for sale. She told me of the many varieties but only some are good for cooking and baking. I've been wanting to make some cookies with them but never got around to it. Your post is the the boost I needed.

Angie said...

Pat - I wonder if I should try lavender in my garden - as you know, I am always looking for plants that the deer and rabbits don't nibble! And plants that thrive in a dry climate!

I am not sure I ever heard of putting lavender in food - how interesting!

Thanks for linking up to Mosaic Monday with this fragrant offering!

Lorrie said...

I can imagine the warm fragrance of lavender baking in your kitchen. I have several jars of dried lavender from my garden and don't quite know what I will use them for this year. Your Pinterest page is full of beautiful ideas.

handmade by amalia said...

This must smell divine, Pat. We have a lot of lavender in the garden and I never knew it could be used for cooking. Thanks for sharing this!
Amalia
xo

betty-NZ said...

I can imagine the smell in your kitchen! I bet there are lots of amazing uses at the festival.

I am glad you joined us at 'My Corner of the World' this week!!

Klara said...

mmmmmm, I LOVE lavender. I didn't know it could be used in recipes.

Sharon Wagner said...

The smell must be amazing. Lavender is my favorite.

A Bit of the Blarney said...

Oh, how I miss the fall in Colorado this year. First time in many years we've not been able to go home. Thank you for sharing your glorious photos!!! Wishing you a wonderful week!

Michelle said...

This loaf cake looks like a piece of art! I can only imagine how good it must taste! Thanks for linking up!

Deb Nance at Readerbuzz said...

Sadly I can't find lavender at my grocery right now. I hope to try this after life resumes its normalcy.