Thursday, July 2, 2009

The Herb Farm / Lavender Cookie


Years ago I visited the sweetest herb farm in Falls City, WA. The herb gardens were graceful and extensive. A few hours spent wandering around the sight and purchasing some of their fine herb plants was always a very special treat for me. The story goes that the lady of the house started putting out some chive starts in a wheelbarrow for sale...and eventually an amazing business took off. At the time I was visiting this farm, they had a gift shop, classes, weekend celebrations and a restaurant that was getting quite a bit of attention for itself by a reservation only six coarse meal. Twenty three years ago they were planning and serving a menu based on what was fresh from their gardens and other P.N.W. fresh ingredients. Since those days The Herb Farm has undergone some extensive changes due to a tragic fire on the original site. Rebuilt and spectacular they are now quoted in National Geographic's as:

#1 Destination Restaurant in the World


That does sound a bit over stated...really....but who knows I have never had the pleasure.

Who would have guessed back then as I was attending a weekend celebration known as their Lavender Festival, what was to come. There was live music, craft type garden related classes and these sweet little Lavender Cookies being served. Here is my token memory of the days when it was just a sweet little known herb garden.

The Herb Farm
Lavender Shortbread Cookies

A lovely treat, ideal with tea or ice cream. Makes 24-36 cookies.

1 1/2 cups of flour
1/4 cup powdered sugar
9 TB. butter
4 TB. lavender flowers
1 TB. granulated sugar to sprinkle on top

Barbara's latest post reminded me that my own lavender was now blooming and I decided to make my annual batch of these cookies to put into the freezer for special "tea times" with friends.


Following is my doubled and update version:

3 cups of flour
3/4 cup of powder sugar
1 cup + 2 TB. of butter
4 TB. of fresh lavender flowers
2 TB. of fresh mint
2 oz. of cream cheese
1 tsp. of vanilla
lavender food coloring

Mix sugar, butter, and cream cheese. Add flour, lavender, mint, vanilla, and food coloring ( I mince the lavender and mint together) Knead until soft. Roll out to 3/8 inch thick. Cut cookies. Sprinkle with sugar. Bake in 350 degree oven for 10-12 minutes, until light golden brown.


All: Just an added note...the lavender has a mild touch of flavor that really blends well with the mint...better then straight lavender. If you use too much lavender it can taste a bit soapy.I love serving this with Lady Grey Tea or Earl Grey.

then...

and now

8 comments:

Vee said...

That sounds like a wonderful place. Thanks for giving us such a delicious sounding tea cookie. I have always wondered about lavender shortbreads and, even though I have no lavender, I'd like to find some to bake these.

Love the new photos on your sidebar, too. John says, "amen." His little great-granddaughter arrived yesterday so his bumper crop is all in. Praise God.

Queenmothermamaw said...

I loved that story. I love the color, the idea and probably the taste of those cookies. I have always grown herbs, but never lavender. I must find some. Thanks for sharing.
QMM

On This Rock said...

Now this is interesting! I haven't ever used lavender in baking and it is not particularly common where I live, or perhaps it is and I have missed it completely....although come to think of it, I do believe that there are some herb farms in the area that I could probably find it. All that jargon to say, your cookies look amazing and I will try this recipe over the next couple of weeks. Thank you for sharing.

Sara said...

Lavender shortbread...amazing. That restaurant looks pretty amazing too.

I've never had any food including lavender but have seen several recipes around and someday maybe I'll get to try something. I do love the fragrance of lavender...

Judy ~ My Front Porch said...

Your lavender shortbread looks most special! My lavender is blooming...and I've been putting it in vases here, there and everywhere...but maybe I should try my hand at baking with it.

Knitting Mania said...

I've had the honor of tasting these little beauties. They taste as good as they look!

:)

Lavinia said...

I've actually eatend and baked lavender cookies. They are refreshingly delicious.

Maree said...

How lovely...I'm going to send that recipe to my Garden Club buddies in Lexington. Earl Grey is my favorite...drink a cup of Earl Grey green every day.

Navigating around TDP is harder now that Lance Armstrong got a hold of it. My daughter helped me in the beginning. Sis went from a 10 to a 4 in about 3 months. She really inspired me, so I want to do the same.

My e-mail is mbrinke1220@gmail.com if you want to ask questions about logging in...the groups there are very helpful.

Happy 4th!!

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