The Last Days of Summer…….Home-Made Lavender Honey and Pancakes

The Last Days of Summer…….
Home-Made Lavender Honey 
and Pancakes
A Stack of Home-Made Pancakes with Lavender Honey
Thursday 11th August 2011 

Jeudi 11 Août 2011 ~ Ste. Claire  
 
Is it just me or has anyone else noticed a marked change in the weather lately ~ it is definitely cooling down. I am sure that I can smell Autumn in the air lately……it’s probably enhanced by my neighbour’s wood-burning fire; the smell of burning aromatic fruit wood wafts through our back doors in the evening and is still lingering in the morning, like a cloud of scented mist in the garden….now, I am a LOVER of seasons, and seasonal food, feasts and festivals, and I like to think I embrace the seasons as they change, but there is always something rather sad about the change from Summer to Autumn…….maybe it’s the thought of not being able to sit under the cherry tree with a book, or that the evenings will soon start “drawing in”…..who knows, but I do feel a little despondent….. only fleetingly however as Autumn is my favourite season with it’s rich colours and abundance of fruit. I’ll soon be starting to ponder and deliberate over recipes for stews, casseroles and dumplings, to be eaten by a roaring log fire, that will soon get me in to cold weather mood, that and kicking through the fallen leaves!

A jar of my Home-Made Lavender Honey
 With the fading light just around the seasonal corner, it is imperative that I start laying down plans to capture the last of summer and bottle it……..easy! And this is where my lavender honey comes in; I make a batch every year ~ it is the first of my late summer and early autumn preserves and the easiest. I am going to be very busy soon, as the apples will soon be ready to harvest and my quince tree is groaning under the weight of fruit this year; my fig tree is also looking very pleased with itself, and there will be kilos and kilos of figs this year……I also have a pear tree which has some fruit this year, so if I make my lavender honey now, it leaves me plenty of time to make my annual batch of jams, pickles and chutneys in the jam factory……the jam factory being a small room with a gas burner at the back of the house!  
Summer in a Jar ~ Lavender Honey
I get my honey from a French neighbour who has bees, in fact I know his bees quite well ~ not well enough to invite over for supper and a few drinks, but fairly well; the fact is that they love our garden with all its herbs and plants……especially the lavender……so I fancy I get my honey at a very reasonable price when I buy it from him,I think he gives me discount for the rental of my flowers and herbs and his bees! I used to buy lavender honey, but then I thought it was about time I made my own ~ given that I have about 30 lavender bushes. As well as giving an amazing and subtle flavour to your recipes, it also makes a wonderful gift for a fellow foodie. I plan on making my own lavender honey all the time now, as even in France, it is quite expensive to buy, and it so easy to prepare.
 I will give you the method of how to make your own lavender honey first, and then I will share a pancake recipe with you, as this honey is just divine when poured liberally over fresh fluffy home-made pancakes…….with a knob of butter too of course!

Home-made Lavender Honey 

from South West France

(Makes one 8oz/225g jar of honey)

You can increase the quantities to make more jars – just remember to keep the flower to honey ratio the same.
Ingredients:
8 ounces (225g) light honey, such as flower honey or clover honey
4 tablespoons dried lavender flowers
 Method:
  1. Heat honey in a heatproof bowl over boiling water (a bain-marie) until very hot, but NOT boiling, then add the lavender flowers and stir well.
  2. Continue to heat over a low heat for 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool a little before covering with a net or fly cover and placing in the sun for about 3 to 4 hours.
  3. Pour the honey through a mesh sieve and discard the cooked lavender flowers.
  4. Pour the honey in to a sterilised jar, cover tightly and label. Keeps like normal honey, but is best in a cool, dark and dry place.
Now to the pancakes, these are not the usual British style pancakes like a small crepe, but they’re a bit like Scotch pancakes only bigger ~ thick and fluffy ~ or like an American style pancake. They are our own “Auberge de la Fontaine” Lavender Pancakes ~ and are made with home-grown organic lavender flowers from our garden here in SW France, where we often serve them for breakfast to the guests. They also make a very elegant dessert when served with cream and fresh fruit. If you can’t get hold of culinary lavender, these pancakes are just fine if made without the lavender flowers, still served with the lavender honey though, and butter and/or cream and fresh fruit.
 The recipe makes about a dozen large pancakes, I usually serve three per person, but you can make them smaller if you wish. 

French Lavender Pancakes With Lavender Honey

Ingredients:
8 ounces (225g) plain flour
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon powdered dried lavender flowers
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 tablespoons butter, melted and allowed to cool slightly
cooking spray or butter
lavender honey, to serve
cream, to serve
butter, to serve
Method:
In a large bowl, mix together all dry ingredients together.
Add the milk, eggs and vanilla extract and whisk until well combined.
Whisk in the melted butter until the batter is thick and very smooth.
Heat frying pan or griddle over medium heat, and spray with cooking oil spray or grease with a knob of butter.
Spoon the pancake batter onto the griddle in equal amounts and cook until bubbles come to the surface of the batter and the edges start to curl up.
Flip pancakes with a spatula, and cook for a few seconds more on the second side.
Check underneath for a golden brown colour– if they are too pale; keep cooking them a bit longer.
When they are done, remove them from the griddle/frying pan and put on a large heat-proof plate in the oven to keep warm and continue until all the batter is used.
Top with Lavender honey and cream, or butter and Lavender honey.
Great with fruit also!

That’s all for now, I am about to start preparing for the rest of my preserves ~ I will be sterilising my kilner jars and trying to find the rubber band for the lids etc…See you tomorrow,

Karen

Comments

  1. Marie says

    Looks great Karen! Every year I say I am going to do something with my Lavender and every year I don't! I need to kick myself!

  2. Annie says

    Yum, again ! I have jars of honey here bought at the local lavender farms, does that count?

    I can't agree about autumn though, it's my favourite season. So much abundance in the hedgerows. Leaves turning, windy days, and the promise of cosy winter evenings by the fire to come :D

  3. Shaheen says

    Oh I love this. And am looking forward to making some for my waffles. I'll need to steal some lavender from my mother in law though :)

    I love the name of your blog too – I like lovage, its not a herb you find in the shops at all, so its best to grow your own.

  4. Karen S Booth says

    Marie ~ maybe next year you can make some lavender honey! I have lots and lots of lavender recipes, so hopefully by next year you will be able to make the most yours…..even if it is only for pot pourri.
    Thanks!
    Karen

  5. Karen S Booth says

    Annie ~ I DO agree,I LOVE Autumn, it is just I like my outside life-style throughout the summer ~ meals on the terrace and sitting under the trees with a book…..but, as it happens Autumn is also my favourite season and I agree about the cosy fires, kicking through the leaves and also all the windfall fruit for my preserving……
    Lavender farm honey does count btw!
    Karen

  6. Karen S Booth says

    Thanks Shaheen…..I am sure your mother in law won;t mind too much, especially if you invite ehr over for waffles and lavender honey!
    I pondered for so long about the name for my blog and then my husband said just call it after your favourite flowers or herbs……so hence the name was born!
    Karen

  7. La Table De Nana says

    Those pancakes w/ the syrup pouring down the sides .. well fantastic:) I make our lavender honey also..

    Your little jar is so cute!

  8. Cathy at Wives with Knives says

    Wow, Karen, that stack of pancakes is a work of art. I grow lavender but have never used it to infuse honey. I'll remember this for next year. Lovely post.

  9. A Trifle Rushed says

    Oh! Yum! I love lavender. We bought some lovely local honey yesterday, it's wonderful to think that the bees buzzing around are making the honey for your bread..or pancakes! (not that there's much activity today, it really does feel chilly here in Brittany, we usually imagine the rest of France bathed in warmth and sunshine on an August day like this!)
    Looking forward to the jams:-)

  10. Kate@katescakesandbakes says

    Lavender honey sounds absolutely stunning- especially drizzled over those yummy pancakes. I'm ashamed to say I've never tried it before- that's definitely a wrong I need to be putting right!

  11. Heather says

    Oh wow, this looks so good! I love that you get a discount because the bees are sampling your flowers to make the honey. That is just so wonderful and what a nice circle to things :)

    I am always greatly relieved when fall comes! I suppose it comes from starting school in the fall each year, but fall always seems like such a fresh start season to me, a time to get out all the sweaters and jackets I love and I just love harvest and halloween things. Our wedding anniversary is Oct. 29, just because I love fall so much!~ :D I'm sure autumn in france is wonderful!~

  12. Fabulicious Food says

    Delicious!! I could just eat these now! Posted A Slice of Cherry Pie book to you today. Estimate 4-5 days delivery! Let me know when it arrives :-))

  13. Fabulicious Food says

    Hi Karen, so pleased the book arrived. Hope you don't mind, I have directly people to this post from my blog as I wanted to mention Lavender Honey! Your recipe loks delicious and easy to make…

  14. says

    Oh. My. Word. I’m on this page because I’ve been LOOKING for what to do with my lavender; what a great gift idea this is, thx! But what really rang my bell was the page with the honey on fig and cheese. Holy cow, can’t wait to try it :)

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