Lavender first came into my life a few years ago while dealing with the erratic sleep patterns of postpartum depression.
I pretty much baptized myself in its oils every night while listening to Australian bedtime meditations on repeat.
Fast forward a hot minute, and now you'll find lavender being used in ways FAR beyond the pillow satchels in your grandma's underwear drawer.
Food-grade lavender adds depth to cakes, cookies, sorbets, macaroons, lemonade... even roasted duck!
I finally got my chance to let lavender shine this week, using it in the oh-so-lovely French 75 cocktail. It seemed only right to use an element commonly associated with southern France (though lavender, as it turns out, is grown all over the world).
As the infusion simmered, my entire house filled with its intoxicating scent. It was dreamy.
This also seemed like a good time to brush up on my lemon garnish making skills.
- ½ cup of food-safe lavender
- 2 cups of water
- 4 tbsp allulose powder (or any keto sweetener you prefer)
- 2 oz gin
- 0.5 oz of lemon juice
- 4 oz chilled champagne (make sure it's brut for fewer carbs if you want this recipe to be keto-friendly)
- lemon twist garnish
- Start by making your lavender infusion. Mix your water and allulose powder in a saucepan on medium heat until all crystals have dissolved. Add your lavender and let steep for 30 minutes.
- Once your lavender has finished infusing, strain into a close-gap glass jar. Use immediately or keep in the fridge for later use.
- Now it's time to ready that cocktail. Add your gin, lemon juice, and one teaspoon of your lavender infusion to a cocktail shaker filled with ice.
- Shake for 30 seconds and strain into a lovely glass. Top with champagne.
- Add your lemon twist!
Health benefits of lavender
Sure, I could list all the scientific studies pointing to the benefits of lavender. But I don't need to. I've had enough first-hand experiences to make me a believer.
Lavender promotes a deep sense of calm and peace at bedtime. I hinted at its benefits earlier when I struggled with postpartum insomnia. I used to sniff it straight out of the vial like a crack addict; it was just that good.
I used lavender oil countless times during my time as a Restorative Nurse at a nursing home. During "relaxation station" – one of our many group therapies – I'd place a drop or two on a warm towel as a complement to back and neck massage. I even had a blind resident ask me to kindly place a few drops on her pillow.
With this heightened sense of calm one could expect to see lowered blood pressures, deeper inhalations, and improved overall wellbeing.
Using lavender in your food is just another way to incorporate a beautiful, natural home remedy for many ailments.
How to cook with lavender
There are other ways to cook with lavender that don't involve the hassle of making an infusion from dried flowers. Most lavender sources can be found at specialty food stores, essential oil distributors, or Amazon.
- Culinary grade lavender oil is a potent, more readily available way to incorporate its flavors. You can use essential oils (check that it's safe for ingestion) or lavender extract. One or two drops is all you need per recipe; one vial will go a long way.
- Lavender and lemon go together like peanut butter and jelly. Combine your lavender flavor with lemon zest or lemon curd for a sure thing.
- Lavender sugar! Yes, it's a thing. Place a few buds in a jar of sugar and let the flavors marinate for a few weeks. Remove the buds, and voila.
- Make lavender vinegar to use in salads the same way you make lavender sugar.
- Incorporate your lavender sugar into whipped cream or keto whipped cream!
- Much like dried lavender, lavender tea can be used to make simple syrups.
- Combine dry lavender with fresh herbs to make a sumptuous meat rub. Pulse your buds in a blender or use a mortar and pestle.
- Sprinkle lavender sprigs on top of baked goods as a garnish.
Keto Lavender French 75
- 1/2 cup food grade lavender
- 2 cups water
- 4 tbsp keto allulose powder
- 2 oz gin
- 0.5 oz lemon
- 4 oz chilled champagne
- 1 slice lemon garnish
- In a saucepan heat water and add keto sweetener, stirring until all crystals have dissolved. Once dissolved, add lavender and steep for 30 minutes.
- Strain into a glass jar. Store in glass jar in fridge until ready to use.
- Add gin, lemon juice, and one tsp of lavender syrup to a shaker filled with ice. Shake well, strain and pour into glass.
- Fill remaining glass with brut champagne. Add lemon twist garnish
If you make this drink I'd love to hear how it goes! Feel free to tag #topshelfie on instagram or send them to me directly. Happy mixing!
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