Lavender is a true sign of warm season in Portugal. It wakes up in early March and blossoms until the end of summer. I love this time of the year and especially going to the forest. Nature transforms and thrives before the first heat wave approaches.
Lavender is an exceptionally handy and healthy plant. Dried lavender can be used in tea or candles and is a great antidepressant and anti-stress solution. It protects against scorpions (!).. I always put it under my tent when I go wild camping. It also has antibacterial properties and can be added to soaps or lotions. But most of all, I love cooking with lavender as this smart plant can both sweeten and spice up your food.
Vegan Lavender Cookies with Lemon Zest Recipe
Makes: 12-15 cookies
Takes: 30 minutes
This recipe is inspired by my favourite Le Cordon Bleu cookie recipe, however I upgraded it and made it vegan. These cookies are going to melt in your mouth. The secret - olive oil. You must go for the best extra vergin olive oil that you can find. Bad oil will give cookies extra bitterness, that you don't want.
Another special ingredient is lavender sugar. You will need a blender to mix together sugar and dried lavender. I prefer mild lavender flavour, hence my ratio is 30g/1oz sugar per 1 tea spoon of dried lavender buds. Mix until you reach dusty sugar powder consistency and yes - you can make as much as you want and store it for future!
140g / 5oz - plain flour
75g / 2.6oz - olive oil
30g / 1oz - lavender sugar
1 small lemon zest
Let's do it:
In a bowl mix dry ingredients and add lemon zest. Then pour olive oil and use your hands to glue everything together. Olive oil will make the dough soft and malleable.
Make a ball and roll it over parchment paper. Your cookies should be 3mm/0.12" high. The dough might be breaking, so I like to stretch it out with my fingers and then even it in the end with the rolling pin.
Create circles of your preferred size and decorate with lavender flowers or more dried lavender buds:
4. If you decide to add lavender flower leaves, you will need to integrate them into the dough. Otherwise, they might burn or just fly away inside the oven. You can do that a piece of parchment paper and the rolling pin.
5. Bake the cookies in the pre-heated oven 160C/320F for 12-15 mins. Depends on the power of your oven. Look for a distinct lemon smell and a light brownish tan on your cookies ;).
These cookies are delicious, soft and simply fall apart in your mouth. They are also very low in calories, cholesterol and sugar, which makes them healthy and guilt-free. They will make your house smell of fresh lemons and Spring.. or better to say Lavender Spring.