Desert lavender syrup is easy to make for TGIF Cocktails on the Patio, or maybe dessert – or both! Desert lavender is easy to identify and harvest. If you are lucky enough to live in sandy soil where desert lavender prefers to grow, here is how to use it. Desert lavender (was Hyptis emoryi, now called Condea emoryi) is easy to grow in all but heavy clay soils, so if you don’t have any – consider planting this fragrant shrub that the butterflies also adore.
Desert Lavender Syrup
6 sprigs of desert lavender – each 5 to 6 inches long
or 2 tablespoons dried desert lavender leaves and flowers
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
Combine the three ingredients in a small saucepan and heat until just barely boiling.
Reduce heat and simmer !stirring every so often! until liquid is reduced by half.
Strain to remove excess desert lavender bits.
Notes on Making
Over-boiling the sprigs results in a bitter aftertaste, which is fine for the third cocktail, but not so fine on strawberries.
You can easily quadruple this, and store it in the fridge for up to 3 weeks. (Fridge because sugar plus plants equals a great place for fungus to grow.)
No, it is not lavender in color, and you could add food coloring if you really want, but I don’t mind the color – looks like maple syrup. Come to think – I had better label this jar!
Pour desert lavender syrup over sliced strawberries or other mild fruit like peaches or pears. Good on vanilla ice cream – or better yet, strawberries and ice cream!
Add a splash of desert lavender syrup to club soda for a sparkling beverage.
It’s syrup. Tastes fine on pancakes, waffles, and French toast.
Use the syrup as a base for a barbecue sauce.
Haven’t used it all? Mix half and half with vodka and store for years. Makes a nice cordial for gifting. Because of the lavender flavoring, you can use a less expensive vodka for this.
Desert Lavender Cocktail Quencher (my own creation)
1 part vodka
1 part desert lavender syrup
3 parts club soda
optional – sprig of desert lavender
We hope to offer Desert Lavender Syrup in the future (on our products page) – but once you learn how easy it is to make, you probably won’t buy any from us.
Learn more uses of desert lavender in my book Father Kino’s Herbs: Growing and Using Them Today (Tierra del Sol Institute Press). This link is to Amazon and if you buy the book there I will get a few pennies.
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