Gluten Free Lemon Lavender Cookies
Dear friend, allow me to introduce you to the softest, most delicate and naturally sweet cookies you may have ever had. These gluten free lemon lavender cookies came together through inspiration, a little creativity and a whole lot of blessing. My family thoroughly enjoyed them and I hope your family and friends do too!
It began on the Sabbath…
Last Saturday, on our Sabbath, my husband and I took the kids to a local park in the town we live in here in Spain. We’ve nicknamed it the “duck park” because they have a big flock of ducks that roam about freely. The locals like to go this park and feed the ducks bread. We like how open the park is and that people can interact with the ducks. These ducks also have ample space and lots of green grass to graze on as well as a man made stream that flows through this park to swim in.
This month of July has been so much cooler than last year so trips to this park are pleasant. What caught my eye though as we walked in was the blooming shrubs of lavender that was glowing a beautiful purple and smelling equally wonderful. I am always awakened to the beauty of God’s creation on the Sabbath in a way that I am not really on other days. His creation comes alive as well as His beauty and majesty.
Aren’t they beautiful?!
We picked a couple of these blossoming herbs, sniffed them and took them home. I had a bag of dried lavender flowers sitting in the pantry and the smell of these aromatic medicinal herbs sparked my inspiration for these soft gluten free lemon lavender cookies.
The health benefits of Lavender
Lavender is native to the Mediterranean and North Africa; a flowering herb from the mint family. Most people think of lavender in personal care products or applying it topically through it’s oil but it can also be used in baking and cooking and has been for centuries.
English Lavender is the sweetest and most commonly used in cooking. I had some local Spanish lavender on hand and that worked fine.
- Vitamin A
You won’t be getting much since we’re using a small amount but it’s worth noting these little flowers are health giving. Lavender is also a natural relaxant. In cooking, a little goes a long way! When used sparingly it can really brighten up a dish.
Gluten Free Lemon Lavender Cookies
I needed a base to work off for these cookies and one of them was that I wanted them to be gluten free. A local nut shop just started stocking ground blanched almond flour so I picked some up to use in this recipe.
The other part of this recipe base that was important was that I didn’t want to use sugar but honey instead. I stopped buying and using white sugar years ago in favour of healthy natural sweetners. Honey is one of those natural sweeteners I use all the time in the kitchen for its health benefits and wonderful aroma and taste.
Honey heated above a certain temperature can actually be toxic to the body.
So, I had to find a way to sweeten these cookies without putting the honey into the dough to be baked. I finally decided to make a glaze of butter and honey to spoon over each cookie after they came out of the oven.
Let me tell you that this glaze is what makes these cookies so soft, moist and almost fudge like! They might look hard and crumbly when they come out of the oven but the glaze softens these cookies surprisingly so that you will want to savour each bite.
The final touch of grated lemon zest ties the flavour together, complimenting the citrus notes of the lavender flowers.
This recipe makes 12 cookies.
- 2 cups of blanched Almond flour
- 50g/1.7oz (about 3 1/2 Tbs) of softened butter
- 1 level Tbs dried lavender flowers
- The zest of 1/2 a lemon
For the glaze:
- 1 heaped Tbs of honey
- 1 heaped Tbs butter
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350F
- Line a baking tray with parchment paper
- Pour almond flour and dried lavender into a large mixing bowl
- Press butter into the dry ingredients and form a ball
- Pull off 2 inch chunks with your thumb and index finger then roll into a small ball
- Place on baking tray
- Repeat until you’ve finished the dough
- Press each cookie down gently with a fork
- Bake for 10 minutes
- While the cookies bake, gently heat the honey and butter in a pan on the stove
- Pull out the cookies and spoon the glaze mixture liberally over each cookie
- Grate lemon zest over each cookie
- Serve and enjoy!
Note: Lavender is a strong herb and some might find it a bit overpowering. You can half the amount in this recipe if you want a little less of the strong smell.