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Deb Hall

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Recipe: Strawberries with Lavender Syrup

by Deb Hall » Wed May 28, 2008 9:52 pm

Just got my CSA pickup and (joy of joys ) there were farm-fresh strawberries!!! In hopes that some of you are able to snag some of the same at a Farmer's Market, or u-pick, I wanted to share this recipe. From Bon Appetit, we make this every year, and every year it's an outstanding way to show -off the flavor of real strawberries. (Note: do not use this recipe with store brought/Driscoll Strawberries, it just doesn't compare.

A couple of additional notes:
Lavender blossoms can be purchased at natural food stores, Whole Foods, Natures Magic and I 'm betting Nuts n Stuff. They are pretty cheap if you buy them from places that sell bulk.
The syrup and sugar are really handy to have around and both keep very well: We use the left over Lemon sugar to top other fruits (blueberries, etc) and to top homemade muffins before they go into the oven. Fruit salad gets tossed with the lavender syrup and I'm sure it's sensational in teas.
The creme fraiche, while wonderful, is optional in my book...

Enjoy!
Deb


Strawberries with Lemon Sugar and Lavender Syrup
Bon Appetit 2005

You can make the lavender syrup and slice the berries ahead of time, but toss them together at the last minute. Any remaining lemon sugar can be used to sweeten espresso or tea.

Servings: Makes 8 servings.


Ingredients:
1/3 cup plus 1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon peel (Microplane zester is preferred)
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons honey (preferrably Wild Flower)
2 teaspoons dried lavender blossoms
3 1-pound containers strawberries, hulled, sliced
Crème fraîche or sour cream

Preparation: Mash 1/3 cup sugar and lemon peel in small bowl to blend well. (Lemon sugar can be made 3 days ahead. Cover and store at room temperature.)

Bring 1/2 cup sugar, 1/2 cup water, honey, and lavender to boil in heavy small saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until lavender flavor is pronounced, about 3 minutes. Strain syrup into small bowl. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and let stand at room temperature. Rewarm syrup before continuing.)

Place berries in large bowl. Pour warm syrup over berries; stir to coat. Divide berries and syrup among 8 bowls. Spoon crème fraîche over berries, sprinkle with lemon sugar, and serve immediately.
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Michelle R.

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Re: Recipe: Strawberries with Lavender Syrup

by Michelle R. » Thu May 29, 2008 10:31 am

sounds amazing.
"If you're gonna be a bear, be a grizzly!"
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Deb Hall

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Re: Recipe: Strawberries with Lavender Syrup

by Deb Hall » Thu May 29, 2008 7:56 pm

Michelle,

It is really wonderful and it's actually really quick and easy. Everytime I make the lavendar syrup I'm amazed that the flavor is as developed after such a short time...
We are having it for dessert tonight!
Deb
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Dan Thomas

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Re: Recipe: Strawberries with Lavender Syrup

by Dan Thomas » Sun Jun 01, 2008 5:37 am

Sounds Yummy!...

Most of the time, when I use lavender, I put it in a sauce that accompanies lamb.....

It never occurred to me to pair it with a sweet dish!
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Ethan Ray

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Re: Recipe: Strawberries with Lavender Syrup

by Ethan Ray » Tue Jun 03, 2008 12:07 pm

Dan Thomas wrote:Sounds Yummy!...

Most of the time, when I use lavender, I put it in a sauce that accompanies lamb.....

It never occurred to me to pair it with a sweet dish!



Lavender has a wonderful affinity for desserts.

Strawberries and lavender is one of my favorite lavender pairings actually... one i always make in sorbet once strawberries start looking decent.



The only thing about using lavender or any other flowers: using rose, orange blossom, etc. (or any thing like rose water too), is that you have to be very careful you don't get too carried away with the flowers.

Too much and the dish will taste like soap or potpourri.
Just the right amount, and you get these faint, fragrant floral notes that literally perfume the dish.

In the event that you're cooking with flowers in liquid (and not adding it in a syrup as in this recipe), it's best to continually taste it while the flowers steep. As soon as the flavor is right where you want it, strain the flowers out.

If you don't have a strainer at home fine enough, using a tea infuser (tea ball, etc) works great for this, or bundling up everything in a coffee filter and tying it off.
Ethan Ray

I put vegetables in your desserts, white chocolate with your fish and other nonsense stuff that you think shouldn't make sense, but coax the nonsense into something that makes complete sense in your mouth. Just open your mind, mouth and eat.
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Robin F.

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Re: Recipe: Strawberries with Lavender Syrup

by Robin F. » Thu Jun 05, 2008 2:07 pm

That's an interesting coment Ethan. I recently interviewed Chef Looi and off air I was telling him how much I loved the lavendar ice cream at the old Asiatique. He said they had a lot of people complaining it tasted like soap! I thought it was delicious!
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Robin Garr

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Re: Recipe: Strawberries with Lavender Syrup

by Robin Garr » Thu Jun 05, 2008 4:04 pm

Robin F. wrote:That's an interesting coment Ethan. I recently interviewed Chef Looi and off air I was telling him how much I loved the lavendar ice cream at the old Asiatique. He said they had a lot of people complaining it tasted like soap! I thought it was delicious!

The rosewater-scented Iranian ice cream at Saffron's also tastes like soap, and it IS delicious!
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Ethan Ray

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Re: Recipe: Strawberries with Lavender Syrup

by Ethan Ray » Thu Jun 05, 2008 10:27 pm

Robin Garr wrote:
Robin F. wrote:That's an interesting coment Ethan. I recently interviewed Chef Looi and off air I was telling him how much I loved the lavendar ice cream at the old Asiatique. He said they had a lot of people complaining it tasted like soap! I thought it was delicious!

The rosewater-scented Iranian ice cream at Saffron's also tastes like soap, and it IS delicious!


Much in the same way that Kulfi is.
The rosewater can be overbearing in some bites, but in others it balances out.

a peculiar thing the palate is.
Ethan Ray

I put vegetables in your desserts, white chocolate with your fish and other nonsense stuff that you think shouldn't make sense, but coax the nonsense into something that makes complete sense in your mouth. Just open your mind, mouth and eat.
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Re: Recipe: Strawberries with Lavender Syrup

by Ethan Ray » Thu Jun 05, 2008 10:32 pm

Robin F. wrote:That's an interesting coment Ethan. I recently interviewed Chef Looi and off air I was telling him how much I loved the lavendar ice cream at the old Asiatique. He said they had a lot of people complaining it tasted like soap! I thought it was delicious!


I made both Honey-Lavender ice cream, and Strawberry-Lavender sorbet during mine time at Asiatique.

Looi was a bit apprehensive at first and made the soap references, but i managed to get the ratios and steeping times right, and they went over well.

By "the old Asiatique", am I right in assuming you mean the St. Matthews location?


Funny, I've made Strawberry-Lavender sorbet at both Asiatique and the Oakroom, and I've had more request for the recipe than anything else i've ever made.
Come to think of it, I keep forgetting I've got to email someone the recipe who requested it during the Derby madness. :oops:


I'm going to have to toy with my current recipe and make it more home cook friendly, since i don't think most people have glucose, trimoline and sorbet stabilzer in their pantries.
Ethan Ray

I put vegetables in your desserts, white chocolate with your fish and other nonsense stuff that you think shouldn't make sense, but coax the nonsense into something that makes complete sense in your mouth. Just open your mind, mouth and eat.
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Dan Thomas

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Re: Recipe: Strawberries with Lavender Syrup

by Dan Thomas » Fri Jun 06, 2008 1:53 am

Not to discount how wonderful lavender is, but most folks that don't like cilantro usually say it also tastes like soap!
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Re: Recipe: Strawberries with Lavender Syrup

by Robin F. » Fri Jun 06, 2008 9:04 am

Ethan - yes - it was the honey/lavendar when they were in St. Matthews. I still think about that ice cream. Yummmmmmm
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Re: Recipe: Strawberries with Lavender Syrup

by Robin F. » Mon Jun 09, 2008 9:42 am

I just had to come back and say I made this recipe for a dinner party Saturday night and it was fabulous. Delecate and flavorful. On Sunday I was putting the lemon sugar on plain strawberries. Yummy!

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