Hello, young Padawan
If I propose a lovely end-of-summer dessert, what do you say? I hope so, because that’s the program for today, lol.
Lavender is a sweet scent that you put in your essential oil diffuser to bring a little poetry to your interior and relief to your respiratory tract. This plant is both medicinal and ornamental and the queen of perfumers. Sometimes it gets a bad press, like this awful synthetic lavender with which certain industrialists would like you to perfume your toilets. Still, I know you resist, dear Padawan, because we are here among quality people, lol.
It sometimes makes you think of your grandma or your old provincial pharmacist who always knew how to make the decoction that would relieve your cough or sore throat. Still, this ancestral and obsolete plant is nevertheless at the forefront of the news since our European deputies, paid handsomely with our taxes, want to ban it and have even voted for a premium for uprooting lavender this year. If one day, someone had told us that having lavender feet and its essential oil at home would be militant, even resistant, we would not have believed it. What an era!
Enough chatter, and make way for the dissident dessert.
Let’s call a spade a spade, or a lavender plant, a lavender plant. There is true lavender (lavande vraie), also called common or Officinale, from its Latin name lavandula augustifolia or lavandula officinalis, there is aspic lavender (lavande aspic), or lavandula latifolia, and finally lavandin which is a cross between the two, called lavandula hybrida, as its name indicates it. Here’s how to tell them apart:
Relaxing and healing, true lavender, usable in herbal tea, hydrosol, or essential oil, is a panacea for human health. Natural calming in case of insomnia or irritability, lavender helps to reduce bronchial congestion. It is also effective in the form of pure essential oil directly on the insect bites of our “dear” summer mosquitoes to stop the itching, for example, or in massage of the temples in case of headaches or stress.
True lavender is the absolute reference of French aromatherapy; it’s our Swiss army knife. It’s great for almost everything, so clearly, if you want to try natural healing plants, start with this one, that can be used in herbal tea, in the form of essential oil in pure or diluted massage, in diffusion, orally, or in a multitude of other ways. It has very few contraindications; lavender will conquer you.
As far as essential oils are concerned, since we are talking about them here, let me give you two references of bibles that are easy to live with and to take in hand, for french reader’s only:
1/ Le guide terre vivant des huiles essentielles, par le Dr Françoise Couic Marinier, aux éditions Terre Vivante.
2/ Ma bible des huiles essentielles, par Danièle Festy, aux éditions Leduc. S Pratique.
Come on, let’s go to the kitchen, little rebel 😉
Roasted apricots, lavender and honey.
For two servings
6 ripe apricots
4 pinches – or 1 tsp – of organic dried lavender flowers
1 tsp organic lavender honey
1 knob of butter
Optionnal : A sprig of fresh lavender per person, for decoration.
Wash, dry, and delicately cut the apricots in half. Remove the stones, then cut them into half-quarters (i.e., each half apricot in 4, or your whole apricot in 8.)
Once these 1st grade level maths are done, without a headache thanks to the true lavender essential oil we talked about above, put the knob of butter into a hot pan and wait 2 or 3 seconds for it to simmer, without brown, then add apricots, lavender, then stir gently and cover.
Cook covered over medium heat until they release juice (about 5 minutes of cooking), then turn off the heat. Off the heat, add the lavender honey, and stir gently. Keep warm.
In your most beautiful ramekins, cassolettes, or Japanese tea glasses, place a few spoonfuls of these magnificent roasted apricots whose sexy smell will force you to discreetly eat one or two pieces away from the inquisitive gaze of your guests, lol.
Arrange a sprig of fresh lavender on top for a reminder and a little decorative touch. Good tasting.
So much for the little recipe of the day; I hope you will appreciate the delicacy of this dessert which smells good of the holidays in the south of France. As for the food and wine pairing, I suggest you a glass of champagne, a glass of apricot juice, or a small mead.