August gardens mean lavender, lavender, and MORE lavender. My “Phenomenal” lavender (talked about here) is bring SUCH beauty to the every day and I knew it was time to share my tips for a gorgeous lavender honey latté. (But be kind:). My Nikon is headed out for repairs and these photos are brought to you by my iPhone. Bleh.)
If we’re talking about lavender, then it’s a great excuse to show you the cake I made for Anaïs’s birthday the other day. So freaking pretty I can’t take it.
The sun rose at 5:39 this morning across the Great Lake. It rose at 5:34 just a few days ago. (Yes, I pay attention to these things). The days are rapidly getting shorter, and that is a great excuse for more coffee.
IF one needed ever needs an excuse for such things.
My morning ritual consists of something special just for mom. Be it a walk, a tour in the kayak, or like this morning… just silence and the sunrise over the lake.
I came home, roasted my beans, milked the cow and harvested the lavender. The night before I had visited a little farm stand for some honey. The hives are close enough to my house that I KNOW those sweet little bees visited my garden so, even though I didn’t keep bees this year, in theory… I’m calling this honey “ours”.
My lattés are about raw milk, freshly roasted beans, honey and a vintage cup. Some deets? Sure, I thought you’d never ask….
HOW TO ROAST COFFEE BEANS IN CAST IRON
It’s easier than you think! Preheat your cast iron for a few minutes until it’s NICE and hot. Pour a thin layer of beans into the pan and stir. (As a busy mom I can never just stand there, and so they usually end up cooking for a few minutes on their own before I begin to stir them. Not the end of the world in my book.). But once they’ve begun to brown I try to be really good about keeping them moving at that point. I use my wooden spatula, but you might like to use a whisk.
Simply cook your beans until your desired color. I like mine NICE and dark. Starbucks burns theirs for crying out loud. I’ve heard the darker the bean, the less caffeine, which seems right to me because storebought coffee tends to make me much more jittery than when I roast my own nice and black.
Pour your beans off immedieatly so they can begin to cool and store them for up to a week in an airtight containter. I tend to roast very small batches so we are always enjoying freshly roasted beans.
LAVENDER INFUSED HONEY
Please note: this is a raw honey, no heat method and may introduce bacteria that could cause your honey to ferment in an uncontrolled way. If you are concerned, you may want to heat your honey before adding to your herbs and/or use dried lavender.
This is even easier than roasting your own beans. Simply harvest your lavender (wash and thoroughly air dry if you have concerns about little bugs, I don’t) slightly bruise the lavender with your mortar and pestle to aid in releasing the essential oils, layer in the bottom of your favorite jar (I’m a sucker for Le Parfait jars) and allow to steep in the sunshine turning the jar a couple of times a day. Your honey will be ready in a few weeks.
In addition to lavender honey I make rosemary honey, truffle honey and chamomile honey to name a few.
And now, can we just talk about my espresso machine???
I LOVE MY BREVILLE!!!! I had a friend who’s QUITE a coffee aficionado over a few weeks ago and she played with it every chance she got. She was “oooing” and “ahhhing” so much over in my coffee corner that her husband surprised her with one the other day. So…. I’m thinking I made a good choice.
We have been himming and hawing over the purchase of an espresso machine for YEARS. We’ve had our handful of cheapies and knew we wanted to make a more substantial investment into our kitchen. Now mind you, espresso machines can run well into the five-digit territory, but we kept this one in the three-digit arena. No more super cheap machines that break down after nine months. We LOVE to run into town for our favorite lattés or iced café miels… but then COVID hit and that was the straw that broke the cow’s back. Curbside lattés were a novelty for a few weeks and then lost their appeal. It was time to pull the Breville trigger.
I haven’t regretted it for ONE SECOND!
When I’m making my lavender honey latté I start by warming my cup with the hot water setting. The top of the machine gets plenty hot for the average gal, but I’m sort of a nut about my lattés being EXTRA hot, so I fill my cup with hot water while I go to the cooler for my milk, get out the honey, etc.
Then I dump the water, add a little spoonful of honey to my cup (leaving the spoon) and then place the cup on top of the machine to continue to stay warm.
Now it’s on to steaming my milk. Fresh milk from Fern is what I use, but of course, use what you have on hand, filling your stainless pitcher to the small “V”. I turn the steam setting on, let it get revved up, then turn it off for about 8 seconds before turning it back on again. (As per the Breville directions… are all machines like this?) If you’re a coffee gal, you will NOT BE DISAPPOINTED at the microfoam this gorgeous beast can create. It’s perfection.
The coffee grinder is built in and everything is automatic, so I simply press and my portafilter fills up the right amount for a double shot espresso. The crema is gorgeous, and I hold the spoon under the drips for a couple of seconds to rinse it off. The honey liquifies under the heat of the espresso drips and I pour in my milk and top with a touch of foam. Et voila!
Latté art is next on my list for sure. How about a pretty, script, “PF”?
I’m no professional, so I’m guessing some of you will have some great tips for me. Do tell! And tell me if you will be trying a lavender honey latté any time soon! Take a pic and tag my on Instagram! @parisiennefarmgirl
Now… I gotta go harvest some veg. Homeschool season is right around the corner and we all KNOW how many lattés THAT requires!!!
Angela, “Parisienne Farmgirl”