Recipe: Lavender Liqueur
If you're getting my newsletter, you'll know I'll be signing books (or whatever you want me to sign) at the Australian Romance Readers Association (ARRA) Romantic Rendezvous in Sydney on #ValentinesDay weekend - and you'll know this means lavender!
I thought long and hard about a blog post that suited my mood as I ready myself for the wild launch of The King's Mistress - and I reckon we all deserve a drink to celebrate. I've been harvesting lavender from may garden again, and I've already posted about lavender water. I decided to try something stronger this time around - and lavender liqueur turned out to be surprisingly simple.
Lavender liqueur has been around since the 1800s - because lavender is a herb and quite edible. It's been used for decades as a calming agent, and has some definitive healing properties as well. In this recipe though, it's used for colour, scent, and flavour. Here goes:
3 tbs lavender flowers - heads only (i.e, no leaves or stems).
1 tbs Darwin pea flower petals (also called a morning glory bloom in my neighbourhood) - this is added to deepen the colour as it's a blue flower. It makes no difference to the taste so leave it out if you like. The drink in the picture doesn't have it because it's not in season down here right now (it's high summer and very hot). Powdered pea flowers are also possible, though these aren't - of course - an authentic ingredient.
Juice of 1 x lemon
1 cup of vodka
1/2 cup of sugar
Infuse the lavender (and pea flowers if you use them) in your vodka overnight.
Next morning, heat your sugar until it dissolves, and add your lemon juice.
Stir your vodka mix slowly with a large, heavy spoon - or use a blender (which, in the 1800s, was a large, heavy spoon held by a strong-armed kitchenhand) - until the liquid is well-blended. This is best assessed via tasting.
Pour your vodka through a muslin square to strain out the flower petals.
Seal your liqueur in a bottle or jar and refrigerate overnight...
...or leave it in the stillroom and hope the local squire catches you in there 'sorting the shelves.' ;-)
Will I have some at ARRA?
There will be lavender - because I always bring a touch of scent with my books (dried homemade sachets for all who visit me this time), but as I'm on deck from 8am, I'll steer clear of the vodka until much later.
I'll be at Stand 5, with the divinely talented HM Hodgson, who I hope will sign all my copies of her books!