Cooking with Lavender Olive Oil
As you can tell we’ve been busy here in our new store, Durango Olive Oil Company, and have managed to expand our product line quite a bit. It’s been an interesting year with receiving little to no snow, last winter to a blazing hot dry summer. And by blazing, I thank every one of our fire, EMS & Law Enforcement folks who worked on our 416 fire this last summer.
Now the weather has turned, overnight and autumn is here with the blustery chilly days. My inspiration for cooking begins to bubble up and this year, I have a whole gourmet store of amazing and tantalizing flavors to play with! Also, we have new olive oil flavors to try like our new lavender olive oil.
I had the opportunity to chat with one of our customers, who had requested this particular flavor of oil. As we didn’t have any, but could easily get our hands on it, I asked her what you could use it for. She informed me that it is a flavor that is normally associated with French roasted vegetables such as in a roast or with chicken and pork but, can be found in baking like lavender macaroons or ice cream.
We had also found information about lavender oil being used to tone down sugary desserts, but in digging around, I was able to learn that the first recorded notation of the use of lavender was during Egyptian mummification processes! Yikes, this is for all you Halloween Ghoulies out there!
Beside that odd bit of herbal use, lavender was widely used by the Greeks and Romans in everything from cooking to scenting bath waters. As a side note, it was the Romans who gave the Latin nomenclature to this woody, low growing evergreen. The Romans called in Lavare (L. to wash), but that fact aside, Lavender was also found to relieve headaches, reduce swelling among other natural benefits.
I have used lavender in teas when I feel severe headaches coming on because the chemical composition of lavender caused blood vessels to dilate and ease the throbbing. Additionally, word from Medical News Today (https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/265922.php#benefits) Lavender has been found to hold antibacterial, anti fungal benefits as well as remedies for minor burns, big bites and hair loss. Current studies on the herb’s medicinal properties are still being discovered, but the future for possible medical uses for the herb is just beginning!
That aside, let me get back to the point of my ramblings, cooking with flavor can be daunting and sometimes not a success. I have had my share of utter failures, but this is the point of cooking, to find new flavors and techniques. To bring healthy options to your family’s meals, rather than pick up the phone and call for the cardboard pizza.
Cooking doesn’t need to be elaborate or gourmet. But I challenge you to step outside your comfort zone, in terms of food and explore! Healthy eating doesn’t need to break the bank any more than gourmet cooking taking hours.
Healthy meals can be simple such as making flavor kale chips, or adding spices, oils and of course, balsamics into the mix. Come on into Durango Olive Oil Company and see what we can do to help you make healthy meals a reality. To help you on your way, I have included a couple of recipes from www.enfuso.com that use lavender olive oil for main entrees.
LAVENDER ROASTED POTATOES
- Red or white skinned potatoes
- 2 teaspoons Lavender Infused Olive Oil
- Parmesan cheese
Cut potatoes into bite sized pieces. Drizzle Lavender Olive Oil on top plus salt and pepper to taste. Spread on a baking sheet and bake at 350 for 30 minutes (or until fork tender). Once done baking, sprinkle with parmesan and brown under a broiler for 2 minutes.
LAVENDER ROSEMARY LEG OF LAMB or PORK ROAST
- 5-6-pound de-boned leg of lamb or pork roast
- 20 cloves of garlic
- 1 teaspoon Lavender Infused Olive Oil
- 2 tablespoons fresh chopped rosemary
- 2 tablespoons fresh chopped mint
- Berry-based jam
- Fresh chopped shallot
Take your lamb or pork roast and stick cloves into small incisions. Combine the Lavender Olive Oil with rosemary and mint. Rub mixture over meat. Cover and let sit for 2 hours. Place in baking dush under a heated broiler for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Do the same on the other side. Test to see if cooked (135 degrees with thermometer or slightly pink cut at thickest part). Season with salt and pepper. Cover with foil and rest for 15 minutes. Save juices from foil and whisk with a bit more Lavender Olive Oil, jam, and shallot. Slice, drizzle with sauce, and serve.