|Hey lavender! Are you ready for the party?|
Have I mentioned how grateful I am for these monthly International Incident Parties? So often these days, my life gets overwhelmingly busy and I find myself neglecting (and missing) both my blog and the many, many food blogs I love to read. But these parties give me an assignment (the theme) and a deadline (the party date). And I always make my deadlines! Best of all, they help me stay connected with many of my fellow food bloggers. So many thanks (as always) to our awesome hostess and founder Penny aka Jeroxie!
Truthfully, at first I was a bit at a loss when I found out that this month's theme was lavender. Ironically, I had just used culinary lavender for the first time in the recent Incident Scones Party, in my lavender, cardamom, and cracked black pepper drop scones. Eek! Just how many lavender dishes can one person come up with?
But rather than despair, I put on my thinking cap. What I loved about my last lavender dish was the play of sweet and savory, so I decided to go in that general direction again. I decided to bake a quickbread, and I settled on a combination of rosemary, brown sugar, vanilla, and, of course, lavender, along with a last-minute addition of a spicy honey and white pepper glaze that (in my humble opinion) took the dish from pretty good to pretty great. I also went with a combination of pastry and buckwheat flours that gave the bread a nice nuttiness, while still allowing for a soft crumb.
Lavender Honey Quickbread
For the bread:
2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 cup buckwheat flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
3 Tbsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp powdered vanilla
1 Tbsp fresh lavender, chopped
1 Tbsp fresh rosemary
2 eggs, beaten
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1/2 cup butter, melted
For the glaze:
1 tsp buttermilk
2-3 heaping tsp raw honey
1/4 tsp white pepper
pinch of sea salt
1/2 Tbsp butter
Combine the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, add the buttermilk to the beaten eggs. Add the melted butter and fold until just combined.
Pour batter into a greased loaf pan and bake until a toothpick comes out clean; about 50-60 minutes.
Meanwhile, combine the ingredients for the glaze and heat in a saucepan over low heat until warm.
When the bread is finished, drizzle the glaze over top while the loaf is still warm:
All that sweet spicy goodness will help make your bread incredibly moist. Gently transfer the bread to a rack to cool. And you know what comes next: Eat that bad boy up! This made a great breakfast - it was fragrant but not perfume-y, and the sweetness was subtle and balanced. Perfect with a cup of jasmine tea.
Now what are you waiting for? Go check out all of the other dishes that people brought to the lavender party!! Thanks for hosting, Penny!!