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April 15, 2008 - Jane Mort
My annual trek to the Philadelphia Flower Show last month netted an unusual bonus —new recipes for herbs. A great many of the exhibits at this year’s flower show featured musical instruments and the bright purple, green and yellow of Mardi Gras, in keeping with the theme “New Orleans — Jazz It Up.” But one exhibit caught my eye, mostly because of its simplicity. It was a restaurant-style kitchen built by the Horticulture Academy at Abraham Lincoln High School in Philadelphia.
Included with the display of fresh herbs were handouts containing recipes for their use. As can be expected, one recipe suggested adding dill, parsley and oregano to a coating for fried chicken. Another idea included parsley and sage in a rice side dish, and a third added oregano to a baked tomato dish.
The most intriguing, recipe, however, involved lavender. Here’s the recipe. Lavender Cookies 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened 1/4 cup superfine sugar 1 egg 2 1/2 tablespoons dried lavender flowers, chopped finely or ground 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cream butter, sugar and egg well in mixer. Add lavender and mix thoroughly. Add flour a little at a time. Cover and chill for 15 minutes. Roll out batter on floured surface to 1/8-inch thick. Cut with cookie cutter. Sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes on ungreased cookie sheet on top shelf in oven. Check for golden brown edges. Cool thoroughly. Speaking of herbs, the plants will be one of the topics at Lewistown Hospital’s Women’s Health and Fitness Day.
The event will be held from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Rec Park Community Center in Lewistown, and one of the speakers will be Nancy Laub, of the Penn State Juniata Valley Master Gardeners. Nancy has been an avid gardener for 35 years and has been growing and cooking with herbs for 10 years. Her topic is, “Herbs Made Simple.” For more information, call 242-7364 or check out www.lewistownhospital.org.