I love food adventures. New flavors and unique ingredients are part of the fun in being kitchen savvy. It’s an even better experience when you’re sharing new and delicious creations with people you love. It’s simple math in my book: Food = love.
The social circles I run in tend to be rather clever and creative with their food, and I love having a high bar to challenge me. Whenever I’m tasked with feeding these people it provides me with the opportunity to try new things that I otherwise wouldn’t attempt, and more often than not that attitude is reciprocated. It’s a very beautiful relationship.
While preparing for a recent young adults fellowship in our home, I was greatly inspired to use the bag of lavender buds I have sitting in my pantry. I originally purchased the bag to make lavender infused milk, which I hoped at the time would assist in our toddler’s bedtime routine (since lavender has a calming effect). The awesome thing about this purchase is the fact that 1) the bag is rather large and 2) It’s very strong, and therefor a little goes a long way. Ergo, I have a lot left over.
So I decided I would try using it in baking, and decided that our gathering would be the perfect excuse to give it a go. The cupcakes I settled on making turned out to be delicious, and I had no leftovers after everyone left.
Now, I just need to discover what else I could incorporate lavender in.
For the cupcakes you will need:
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 1/2 tbs lavender buds (finally chopped)
2/3 cup cold milk
For the frosting you will need:
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
8 oz cream cheese, softened
4 cups powdered sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbs honey (plus more to drizzle if you wish)
1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. and line a muffin tin with cupcake liners. Soften the butter and sugar together with an electric mixer. Add eggs one at a time, and then the vanilla. If you want to make the cupcakes a purple color for appearance, this would be a good time to add half and half of blue and red food coloring.
2) In a separate bowl stir together flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir lavender buds into mix (make sure they are as finely chopped as possible, otherwise you will have chunks of lavender in the cupcakes).
3) Combine the two mixtures, and add milk.
4) Pour batter into the prepared muffin tin, and bake for 20 minutes.
For the Frosting:
Beat the butter and cream cheese together until well mixed. Adding 1 cup at a time, beat in the powdered sugar. Once the frosting is smooth and creamy, add in the vanilla and honey.