Thursday, October 31, 2013

Lavender Dinner at the Farm

It's hard to believe that it's been two months since we hosted two wonderful couples who bid on (and won) a lovely lavender dinner at the farm. The weather was still warm and humid out but that definitely did not dampen our enthusiasm to cook and serve to our guests. My best friend Mary Jo flew in to assist me with the entire event...I am so grateful as I couldn't have done it without her!

Our guests Chuck and Jo garden as a hobby while Ben and Judy are Master Gardeners. So, we decided to begin our evening with a glass (or two) of wine and an early evening stroll through our gardens. We chatted about the history of our farm and shared, in words, our mutual love of lavender!

We then moved our guests to the cozy front porch. Here, Mary Jo and I offered them fresh tomatoes, mozzarella, basil and olives served skewered on fresh lavender stems. So light and yet so delicious! 

Next we moved our guests into the dining room of our farm house. The table was decorated with antique vases filled with fresh lavender....which is not only a treat to the nose but a feast for the eyes. . Our lovely couples began their dinner with a garden salad (picked directly out of our own garden) and a sunshine lavender farm Herbs de Provence dressing. For the main course, we served surf and turf- fresh salmon and filet mignon. This was accompanied with red potatoes roasted with Rosemary and olive oil and roasted green beans with fresh garlic.

Desert consisted of A trio of chocolate mouse cups with blackberries, blueberries (freshly picked that morning) and raspberries with Maple View Farms whipping cream on the side. And, of course Fresh lavender as a garnish. 

The dinner that Mary Jo and I prepared from start to finish was simple, yet elegant. And, everything we offered was either locally grown/produced or directly out of our garden. And, as a final "thank you" from the farm, both couples left with large preserved lavender bouquets.

Our visitors were the most gracious of guests, as you can see by the wonderful thank you letter we received below. 

We look forward to hosting other lovely-lavender food events on the farm again in the future...well, as long as Mary-Jo agrees to fly in again and help me!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Stuffed Red Pepper Soup with Lavender

The cooler weather this past week has brought out my family's desire for soup, soup and MORE soup. Off to check my favorite lavender cookbook ('The Lavender Gourmet- Culinary Recipes for Entertaining and Every Day' by Jennifer Vasich) to find a lovely dish.

This soup was easy and delicious! Especially when enjoyed with a crunchy french banquette ..oh la la!!

Stuffed Red Pepper Soup with Lavender

  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 chicken bouillon cube
  • 1/2 cup yellow onion, diced
  • 1 can (14.5 oz) diced fire-roasted tomatoes
  • 1 can (14.5 oz) tomato sauce
  • 2/3 cup uncooked brown rice
  • 1 large red bell pepper, chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 Tbsp packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • 1 tsp sunshine lavender farm Herbs de Provence

In a large soup pot, brown the ground beef over medium heat. Drain the fat from the beef with a strainer and return the meat to the pot. Add the water and bouillon and then stir over medium heat for a few minutes until the bouillon is completely dissolved. 
Add the remaining ingredients and stir until well incorporated. Bring the soup to a boil, stir and then reduce the heat to low. Cover and simmer for 35 minutes or until the rice is tender. Makes approximately 6 to 8 servings.


(recipe adapted from page 136 of 'The Lavender Gourmet- Culinary Recipes for Entertaining and Every Day' by Jennifer Vasich)

Friday, October 18, 2013

New Delicious Item in the Works...

Although we are on a quick holiday this weekend, I am still working on a few new ideas and items for the Holiday Open House on December 14th.

One item in particular...

As the weather is starting to turn cooler and the leaves are changing colors, all we crave is a hot cup of love to warm our hands. A cup of love and lavender maybe? I just sampled some this morning with my smoked salmon bagel and all the trimmings.

Are you curious? Well, I can only say that it's NOT coffee but another favorite hot beverage...blended with our own culinary grade lavender. It is quite delicious and I'm excited to pack it up in cute little tins for the year end Celebration!
Just one more teasing picture to end this delicious post...

Friday, October 11, 2013

Time for Fall Weddings!

Over the past month we have had several brides call or email the farm to discuss using lavender in their fall weddings. At this time we don't have any fresh lavender to offer them. But, we have the next BEST thing...this years harvest of the most gorgeous lavender I think we have ever produced! I mean BEAUTIFUL!!

One of our brides, "Cory" sent us this stunning photo of her bridal portrait. If you look closely, you can see her lovely bouquet of dried lavender and babies breath.

It's a very nice combination of dried flowers. We are also partial to different colors of dried lavender...very simply tied with a bit of raffia. 

Dried Lavender Bouquet
Or this bouquet incorporating both dried lavender and wheat. I think you will agree that it is breath taking!
Lavender and Wheat Bouquet
If you or someone you love is getting married soon and longs to have lavender in the wedding, check out our dried lavender in our ETSY store. And, we have pinned TONS of ideas on our Pinterest Board- Lavender Weddings on how to incorporate that lavender into your big day. Fall is such a wonderful time for a wedding!