Well the nights are drawing in, the annual ‘is it too early to put the central heating on?’ debate looms and this year’s lavender harvest has been completed. Also let’s not forget, it’s now the month before the month before Christmas! So what do we need to herald this time of year? A spot more lavender inspired culinary creativity, that’s what!
We often think of lavender being more of a summer flavour, think about feather light lavender scones or shortbread and creamy cool lavender panna cotta. But what about something that would fall more under the category of a ‘winter warmer’? So we put our thinking aprons on and landed at about a lovely slow cooked beef and lavender stew.
The gorgeous subtle hint of lavender in this classically inspired beef stew lends a hint of floral and herby interest that really lifts those familiar flavours to a new and interesting dimension. However, remember that we only ever recommend using a specific culinary lavender in your cooking, such as our Dried Culinary Lavender, as you are guaranteed to get a high quality product that has been harvested at just the right moment to ensure that the full lavender flavour is present without having gone over to potentially becoming overpowering and bitter.
So to make yourself a yummy beef and lavender stew, it really couldn’t be easier!
- Get some lovely British casserole beef and dust it in a mixture of flour, seasoning, dried thyme and our scrummy dried culinary lavender. Then sear it in a spot of oil until lightly browned – don’t take it too far as the lavender may burn.
- Tip the beef into a casserole or slow cooker and add a few sliced onions, carrots and chunks of potato (a waxy variety, such as Anya, Pink Fir Apple or Estima, works best and seriously who can be bothered to peel?)
- Deglaze the pan that you seared the beef in with a good splosh of red wine and add this to the casserole with enough chicken stock (beef stock can overpower the flavour of the lavender) to come about two thirds of the way up the other ingredients in the dish.
- Give everything a stir and then pop a lid on and either put in a 150°C oven for 3 hours or leave in the slow cooker, until it’s looking totally delicious!
- Serve with crusty bread and eat it in front of the fire!