The stories of my life on a little island in the middle of the Mediterranean sea ... and my occasional adventures beyond these shores.

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Kitchen tales: Almond lavender cake

While Christmas is a time when I invariably indulge in my love for chocolate when searching for the perfect dessert, at Easter I usually give chocolate a miss and try to make something lighter. Something which is more in keeping with the pastel colours that are generally associated with this special time of year. So when I came across a recipe for Almond Lavender Cake on Folk Magazine's Instagram feed quite a few months ago, I knew that this would be the cake I would be making for Easter dessert.

Lavender (8)

My husband, who has a much more adventurous palate than I do, had been urging me to cook with lavender ever since he had eaten lavender ice-cream at Margo's restaurant. It took me a while to get used to the idea that lavender isn't only used in body lotions and other random potions and that it is actually edible. But once my brain had accepted the fact, I was determined to give lavender a try.

This almond lavender  cake is quite easy to  make and , although it took me a bit longer than the 25 minutes stipulated in the recipe (it took me around 40 minutes), the end result was worth it. This cake is moist and fluffy, with just a hint of lavender - so it doesn't taste like you're eating your body lotion. Most of the lavender flavour is actually concentrated in the drizzle, so although you might be tempted to decrease the calorie count by omitting it, I would not advise it since you will lose some of the cake's magic.

Lavender (10)

Here's the recipe, reproduced entirely from Folk Magazine's blog:

Almond Lavender Cake Recipe (serves 12)

For the cake:

  • 2 cups sugar, divided*
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds (or whole ones, you have to grind them in the food processor anyway)
  • 1 tablespoon dried lavender flowers
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream
  • 1/4 cup half and half cream
  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

For the drizzle:

  • 4 teaspoons boiling water
  • 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1 teaspoon dried lavender flowers
  • additional dried lavender flowers, optional


  1. Grease a 10-in. fluted tube pan and sprinkle with sugar*; set aside.
  2. Place 1/2 cup sugar, almonds and 1 tablespoon lavender in a food processor; cover and process until finely ground.
  3. In a large bowl, cream butter and remaining sugar until light and fluffy; beat in almond mixture until combined.
  4. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla.
  5. In a small bowl, combine sour cream and half-and-half.
  6. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt; add to the creamed  mixture alternately with sour cream mixture, beating well after each addition.
  7. Pour into prepared pan. Bake at 350° for 55-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack to cool completely.

To make the drizzle:

  1. In a small bowl, combine the boiling water and 1 teaspoon lavender. Cover and steep for 5 minutes. Strain, discarding lavender.
  2. In another small bowl, combine confectioners' sugar and enough infused water to achieve desired consistency; drizzle over cake.
  3. Garnish with additional lavender if desired.


I am not sure why the recipe requires the pan to be sprinkled with sugar. It did not seem to add any value to the cake itself and the sugar made it very hard for me to remove the cake from the fluted pan. Next time I make this, I will either not use a fluted pan or I will omit the sprinkled sugar and add it to the rest of the cake batter. I think removing the cake from the pan might work better if the pan is sprinkled with flour after it is greased. Alternatively, I may have waited too long to remove the cake from the pan. Anyway, I just wanted to give you a head's up that you may encounter some issues removing the cake from the pan.

Almond lavender cake (4)

I do hope that you will try this delicious lavender cake recipe. I found others out there and next time I might try a different one. This recipe is definitely a keeper, which is why I have pinned it to one of  my Pinterest boards.

With regards to the lavender, I am sure that most of you will have no trouble finding it. I would have encountered a bit of a problem finding it here but we had purchased some from World Market  the last time we were in the US.To remedy that, we now have three different varieties of lavender growing in pots in our little yard. I simply adore it's unique scent. One of the plants is flowering right now and I hope we will be able to dry the flowers to use in recipes and in other things such as body scrubs or simply in sachets to fragrance closets and drawers.

Lavender (9)

Have you ever cooked with lavender? If you have any special recipes using this fragrant herb, please share them as I would love to give them a try.


  1. Thank you for the great recipe. The cake also sounds like the perfect thing for summer. I will give it a try.

    If you find a recipe for a yellow cake with orange and cranberry, then consider giving it a try. One where you make a sauce, pierce the cake and let the cran-orange sauce drip into the cake. It's so moist, its almost like pudding.

    1. I'll look for this recipe. My husband will love it. He loves the orange-cranberry combination.

  2. Lavender and violets (yes!) are a thing in desserts and sweets in the south of France.

    1. I knew lavender was big there but had not heard about violets. It's not surprising though since I've seen nasturtiums added to salads and have tasted hibiscus tea.

  3. Dear Loree this recipe looks fabulous. Definitely my type of dessert. So pretty too. Thanks for sharing. Hope you are having a delightful day. Hugs!

    1. It is pretty good. I think you will like it too.

  4. Your lavender cake looks lovely. I have never cooked with lavender but sometimes I grow it just for the color and fragrance. :)

    1. I agree that lavender leaves a wonderful scent in the garden. I absolutely love it.

  5. I will DEFINITELY give this a TRY.........
    BANKSY and I will share a piece in THE GARDEN!I will take photos...........
    I think this will post!It takes a long time to LOAD on MY SIDE!!!

    1. So glad you could comment. Banksy eats cake??!! I am sure that if he does he will love this one.

  6. Thank you for sharing this recipe. I am going to bookmark and will give it a try. I haven't baked in a while as there are other things going on in my side of the woods. This cake looks yummy.

    1. I hope you give it a try. It's not difficult and tastes really nice.

  7. I've always wanted to cook a cake with lavender, but haven't had the courage. However, with your endorsement, I think I'll try this one - a far better choice than chocolate for an Easter celebration. Thank you


Thanks for stopping by. I read and appreciate every one of your comments. I will do my best to reply whenever I can.


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