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Cooking with lavender

Chef-bleu-lavande.JPGYou may have noticed that lavender isn't just prized for its aroma anymore. More and more chefs are embracing it as a flavouring for food. It's even shown up on American and Canadian food trend lists for 2012.

Bleu Lavande is a lavender farm in Stanstead in the Eastern Townships that's open to the public. Among their activities are weekly cooking demonstrations. They teach you how to incorporate lavender into everything from a French pork dish to whipped cream-topped desserts. Simon Beaupré is a local chef who leads the workshops. He also owns La Maison de Ville, a bed and bistro in Magog where he cooks with lavender for his guests.

Simon Beaupré spoke with Elizabeth Robertson this morning.

(LAVENDER RECIPES on next page! Click on "Read more," below.)

(Photo, above, of chef Simon Beaupré at Bleu Lavande: courtesy of Simon Beaupré) 

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Two lavender recipes from chef Simon Beaupré, La Maison de Ville, Magog:

Grilled Grapefruit with Honey and Lavender


- Grapefruit
- High-quality honey (Bleu Lavande's lavender honey is preferred!)
- Lavender seasoning to taste

Heat up the grill to its maximum temperature.

Cut the grapefruit into quarters and brush the flesh with honey.

Sprinkle the grapefruit with lavender and grill both sides until they carmelize.

Enjoy the taste of smoked and carmelized lavender... delicious!

*If you don't have a grill available, fry the grapefruit in a pan with some butter.

Lavender and Lemon Marinade for Shrimp

-½ cup white wine
-1 cup olive oil
- Juice of ½ lime
- Juice and zest of 1 lemon
-1 to 2 teaspoons dried lavender flowers (It is possible to use your favourite lavender tea in this recipe)
- 1 chopped French shallot
- Salt to taste
-Raw shelled shrimp (21 to 25... ou plus grosses si désiré !)

Mix all of the ingredients together and add shrimp.

Leave for 2-4 hours.

Drain and set marinade aside.

Grill or pan-fry the shrimp and serve for cocktail hour.