Lavender Cocktail Syrup Recipe
Long considered a beneficial herb for healing and aromatherapy purposes, lavender has most recently garnered interest as a culinary element. It yields a floral, yet savory and slightly bitter, complexity to dishes and can transform them in such a way as to make you think you’ve added multiple flavorings to a dish, when in fact you’ve only added one.
My first experience with flowers as a food source came when I was a child. A local gift shop carried ridiculously overpriced tins of French candy in such flavors as lavender, violet and rose. Fascinated by not only the ornate and gorgeously packaged sweets but the idea of flower-flavored candy as well, I saved up my allowance for weeks to buy one. Each egg-shaped hard candy was perfumed and flowery, not overly sweet, and had one solitary anise seed located in the center. I quickly devoured all the contents. I’m not sure anything even made it home.
And I promptly began saving my allowance for the next tin of exotic delight.
Years later, wanting to share my delight with the idea of flowers-as-food with my own child, I began making flavored simple syrups. Not only can simple syrups be used with a generous amount of club soda for homemade Italian sodas, they can also be combined with cream for Amalfi’s (French sodas), used as dessert toppings, and blended into clever cocktails. And flavored simple syrups are one of the easiest things to whip up in the kitchen.
One important thing to remember when using flowers for culinary purposes; be sure to purchase or grow culinary grade flowers. Simply trotting off to your local greenhouse or home center and buying a pot of lavender will result in some nasty tasting and not-so-good-for-you results, as non-culinary grade flowers are most often treated with pesticides and growth chemicals.
Lavender works will with the following ingredients when making cocktails or non-alcoholic beverages:
|Prep Time||5 mins|
|Cook Time||25 mins|
- 1 1/2 cups Sugar
- 1 1/2 cups Water
- 2 tbsp Lavender Buds
- 1 drop Red Food Coloring
- 1 drop Blue Food Coloring
- Combine water and sugar in a pot and heat slowly over medium-low heat until sugar dissolves.
- Crush lavender buds using a mortar and pestle and add to sugar solution.
- Reduce heat to a low simmer and steep buds for 15-20 minutes.
- Steeping lavender buds tends to result in a slightly brown tinted syrup, so I like to add one drop each of red and blue food coloring when I add the lavender buds. It helps to achieve a subtle lavender color that makes beautiful cocktails.
- After steeping buds, remove from heat.
- Pour contents through a fine mesh sieve and into a large mason jar.
- Let syrup cool until you can handle the jar without melting the flesh off your hands (or if you're impatient like me, wrap a thick kitchen cloth around the jar).
- Line sieve with a coffee filter, place sieve over second jar, and filter syrup. The coffee filter removes fine particulate matter and will result in a clear and debris-free syrup.
By Restaurant Widow
ITEMS WE USED TO MAKE THIS RECIPE