Orange Lavender Bundt Cake
Cooking is fun and can be very meditative. It is an activity that requires your full attention and focus and allows you to express yourself in very delicious ways. Baking also requires its fair amount of creativity, and a little bit of this every day can go quite a long way in securing a little bit of happiness and sunshine for your life.
When kids learn to bake, they begin to develop skills that they can continue to use later on in their lives — participating in hands-on cooking activities teaches kids how to follow directions while helping them develop their skills and abilities and build their self-confidence.
This orange lavender bundt cake recipe is easy to follow and is a good one for the family to try – whether you are a beginner baker or even more advanced.
Ingredients for the Cake
- 3 cups flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- ½ tbsp lavender
- 1 ¼ c sugar
- 1 cup oil
- ½ c milk
- 4 eggs
- ¼ c orange juice
- 1 tbsp orange zest
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- A pinch of salt
Ingredients for the Syrup
- ¼ c agave or honey
- ¼ c orange juice
- ¼ c brown sugar
Note: You can also add a small amount of maple syrup to this at the end for a smoother and thicker consistency and sweeter taste.
Directions for the Cake
- You want to first start by combining your dry ingredients in a bowl and mixing them well.
- In a separate bowl, you can combine the oil, melted butter, and sugar.
- You then add all your ingredients to your mixer – both wet and dry – and begin adding in your eggs as you mix.
- You then need to grease a bundt pan and get ready to pour the mixture into the pan.
Directions for the Syrup
- To make the syrup, you need to have a pot on the stove set at medium to low heat.
- Pour in your agave or honey and then add the orange juice.
- Stir them together well as the mixture begins to heat up.
- You can then add the brown sugar and continue to stir.
- Continue to stir the mixture until it gets a thicker consistency.
Once the cake is done and cooled, remove it from the bundt pan and pour your syrup over the top. You can then garnish your slice of cake with some of those lavender flowers you used in the recipe.
Baking with Lavender
Many describe lavender as having a sweet fruity and floral aroma that works well in baked goods. It is a great ingredient to include in both sweet and savory dishes and can transform the most mundane treats into something much more magnificent and mouthwatering.
When working with lavender, however, you should remember that less is more. You don’t want to use too much, or you risk overwhelming the recipe and hijacking the other flavors.
Lavender is also closely related to rosemary and has the ability to further elevate top notes while adding an almost minty quality.
If you choose to bake with fresh lavender, then you will want to use almost twice the amount you would if the lavender was dried. Dried lavender is much more concentrated than fresh lavender, which is why recipes don’t require as much of the dried variety. One part of fresh lavender buds is equal to approximately 1/3 part dried buds.
You should also take care not to overwhelm your recipe by using too much lavender. Keeping it as more of a back note to your other flavors will help elevate your recipe.
Avoiding the Soapy Taste
Whenever you purchase lavender for baking, you want to make sure that it is culinary lavender. This means that it was produced specifically for cooking. It is also the type of lavender that is suitable for consumption, unlike the ornamental variety that is more like potpourri.
Lavender should always be used for infusion and should never be the star of the show in a recipe like above. No one wants to take a bite of their delicious orange and lavender bundt cake only to come out with several leaves in their mouth. Yuck.
Vanilla is the same way. If you use too much vanilla, it can overpower a recipe. So, instead of drowning your cake in lavender, use a light touch, taste, and add more if desired.
Lavender and Citrus
Lavender works best when paired with anything citrus like orange, lemon juice, honey, and zest. It creates a perfect balance for your baked goods this way and adds a nice and light touch of exotic and delicious flavor that isn’t going to overpower your taste buds.
In addition to the orange in this recipe, you can also use lavender in other recipes that include brighter flavors like lemons, berries, and mint.
Where Can I Purchase Lavender Flowers?
Culinary lavender for baking can often be purchased at gourmet stores, spice shops, specialty stores, and even online. Just make sure you are purchasing your lavender from a well-known and reputable company.
By purchasing from a reputable company, you will have more peace of mind knowing that the lavender hasn’t been treated with any unsafe chemicals. You can also learn how to grow your own lavender as well.
Storing Your Unused Lavender
Lavender flower buds can be stored in Ziplock bags or in clean and airtight jars once it has dried out. You will then want to store the lavender in a cool and dark place until you are ready to use it for another recipe. You can also keep the tightly sealed jars in the refrigerator and can pull the dried lavender out for a tasty addition to your nighttime tea!
Now that you know how to properly cook with lavender to avoid that soapy taste many people fear, you can go ahead and incorporate this fresh or dried ingredient into your favorite sweet and savory recipes until you find your absolute favorites!