Lavender is in bloom all over town. If you don’t have it your yard I bet you have neighbor who does. Lavender is known for its amazing aromatic smell which can give baked goods a subtle floral flavor. I have an overabundance of summer squash this year and I am not a particular fan of this “vegetable”. I don’t like to waste anything and have been searching the internet for recipes to use it up. This cake was amazing and disappeared quickly in my house. It was very moist , the squash pretty much melts and leaves behind a great texture that is not dry or mushy. If you are a gluten free baker you know that getting a satisfying baked good can be a challenge. This simple recipe also does not require a lot of special additives that you may not have on hand.
Lemon, Lavender, Squash Recipe
Preheat your oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
Grease and flour or line with parchment paper 1-2 cake or loaf pans. I did one standard round cake pan and make 5 extra cupcakes
In a large metal bowl cream together with a hand mixer.
1 cup of softened, unsalted butter or substitute
1 tsp of almond extract
1/2 tsp of vanilla extract
1 and 1/2 cups of granulated sugar.
Juice and zest of 1 medium lemon
1-2 tsp of powdered dried lavender flowers
One at a time add in 3 eggs and continue to mix.
In a medium metal bowl add…..
3 cups of flour (1 cup almond, 1 cup brown rice, and 1 cup buckwheat)
1 tsp of baking powder
1/2 tsp of baking soda
1 tsp of salt
1 TBSP of poppy seeds
Sift the dry ingredient into the larger bowl and mix well.
2 cup of shredded yellow summer squash
Fill and level your prepared pans
Bake at 325 for -60 minutes until an inserted toothpick comes out clean
Let cool, run a knife around the rim and invert
You can ice or dust with powdered sugar
Will store in a covered tin on the counter or fridge for a up to a week
Latin name: Lavandula (there are lots of species). Family: Laminacea (mint family). Lavender is an evergreen perennial shrub that can grow 1-4 ft high. Typically it appears as a smaller singular plant but in the right conditions it will spread and expand to fill a larger space. The entire herb is covered in a grayish down. At this time of year the plant shoots up a flowers in the form of a terminal spikes. The highly scented purple flowers form a group on the tip of their personal stalk. The narrow leaves are sparsely arranged oppositely on the square stem, often clustered at the base of the plant when not in bloom. Lavender can be very easy to grow in many climates especially when given well drained, poor, sandy soil and full sun. Lavender is not native to the United States. It is very popular with bees and butterflies. The smell is the best way to remember this herb. Rub any part of it between your hands and smell your palms.
Lavender’s pure essential oil is a great remedy for burns, cuts, tight muscles, rheumatism, edema, eczema, hair loss, acne, fungal infections, earache, cold sores, and insect bites/stings. This plant contains numerous volatile oils, many of which are powerful anti-microbials. It was used in WW 2 for wounds and parasites. It was burned for bubonic plague to prevent the spread of the disease. Steam inhalations, baths, and infusions have been used to treat chest infections, asthma, dizziness, insomnia, digestive issues, colic, fever, colds, flu, strep, yeast, vaginal infections, bad breath, muscle spasms, headaches, fear, earaches, eczema, acne, burns, cold sores, edema, rheumatism, hair lossatigue, stress and anxiety. Lavender has a history of being present at birth and death because of its calming nature. The flowers are edible and can be used in baked goods, and other sweets. You will find this herb in many gifts and beauty products.
Energetics:bitter, pungent, sweet, cooling, dry
Parts used:flowers. Leaves and stalks can be used for incense
Contraindications: During pregnancy. Do not use the essential oil internally. Do your research on using the pure EO on a frequent basis externally (including in creams and shampoos).