Inspiration for recipes not only comes from staring at the pantry, for scents are part of the culinary experience. Lavender Apple is one of my favorite shower gels at a small chain of bath shops located in New York City. It’s not a teenage bubble gum, sugary scent. The fragrance is mildly sweet and calm. The taste of this bread recipe is slightly similar to the smell of the shower gel because of the lavender flowers. However, this bread has an earthy taste.
The earthy taste is a combination of unbleached white flour, whole-wheat flour and ground yellow cornmeal. I was a little skeptical about combining a myriad of flours with lavender, for whole-wheat-flour has a “type-A” taste. It’s a hearty flavor, beneficial to maintaining good health. The cornmeal has a sweet and gritty taste. The white flour remains neutral in flavor.
Another inspiration for this recipe is the start of autumn and the season of apples. Besides purchasing Granny Smith, MacIntosh and Gold Delicious year round, this is the time to discover heirloom varieties. I recently experimented with Cox’s Orange Pippen in a pizza recipe. It’s a small and tart apple, excellent for baking in pies, cakes and breads.
With a combination of different flours, dried lavender and tart apples, this hearty bread has a slightly sweet and floral taste. I was pleasantly surprised the lavender didn’t compete with the flours. Then I remember the floral scent of lavender has a slight earthy smell, too. This is the herb used in herbes de Provence spice mixes including marjoram, thyme, rosemary and oregano. In the season of crumbly leaves, such earthy smells are comforting and calm for cooler weather in days ahead. Perhaps, I should continue visiting beauty shops for more recipe ideas.
Besides print and online sources for food, what else inspires your recipes?
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