Monthly Archives: September 2010

Sour cream pound cake with lavender peaches

Peach season here stretches from late April to … September, apparently. You can’t go to a farm stand without finding these fuzzy beauties, ready for poaching, baking, pureeing and eating raw. I recently used a batch of white peaches to serve with this splendid sour-cream pound cake specked with vanilla seeds.

While the cake bakes, you make a simple vanilla/lavender syrup, saving some for the whipped cream and then bubbling the syrup further with sliced peaches. Served over the soft, creamy pound cake, the peaches create a lovely perfume with the lavender – something you could bottle and sell if you didn’t eat it so fast.

This was my first time making pound cake and while it’s not as good as my mother’s, it’s still quite tasty.

From Bon Appetit:

Sour cream pound cake


  • 3/4 c. plus 1 T flour
  • 1/4 c. cornstarch
  • 3/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. fine sea salt
  • 3/4 c. sugar
  • 10 T unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 c. sour cream

Preheat oven to 325. Butter a metal loaf pan (8 1/2 x 4 1/2 x 2 3/4 inch). Dust  pan with flour; tap out excess.

Sift 3/4 c. plus 1 T flour, cornstarch, baking  powder, and salt into medium bowl. Set aside.

Combine sugar and butter in large bowl; scrape in seeds from vanilla bean (reserve bean for lavender syrup). Using electric mixer, beat sugar mixture until fluffy. Add egg, egg white, and vanilla extract; beat until mixture is pale and thick, about 2 minutes. Beat in sour  cream. Add flour mixture; beat just until blended. Spread batter evenly in prepared pan.

Bake cake until tester inserted into center comes out clean, 56-58 minutes. Cool in pan on rack 15 minutes. Turn cake out, then turn top side up (this can be tricky!). Cool  completely. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Wrap in foil and store at room temperature.)

Lavender syrup and peaches


  • 1 1/2 c. sugar
  • 3 T dried lavender blossoms
  • 4 medium firm but ripe peaches, pitted, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch wedges
  • 3 T fresh lemon juice
  • 1 c. chilled heavy whipping cream

Combine 2 1/4 c. water, sugar, lavender, and reserved vanilla bean in saucepan.  Boil, stirring until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat; cover and let steep 10 minutes. Strain syrup into medium bowl; discard lavender. Pour 2 T lavender syrup into small bowl; reserve for whipped cream. Cover and chill.

Return remaining syrup to same saucepan; add peaches and lemon juice and bring to boil. Reduce heat; simmer about 5 minutes. Transfer peaches to bowl.

Boil syrup in pan until reduced to 1 c., 12-14 minutes. Pour over  peaches. Chill uncovered 2 hours.

Beat cream and 2 T reserved syrup in medium bowl to soft peaks. Slice cake. Serve with peaches, syrup, and cream.

You will absolutely love this unique and inspiring peach recipe. Enjoy, friends! xoxo

Heirloom garlic

I love walking through the neighborhood farmers’ market during a basil tasting or heirloom tomato tasting. But, garlic? I recently came upon a stand for Plum Granny Farm at the Krankie’s market downtown. Their bounty included unique heads of heirloom garlic in various shades of sandy white and light violet. Each of the dozen varieties had a little explanation with it: “Good in marinades” “strong bite” or “perfect for roasting.”

I inquired about heirloom garlic with the farmer, who insisted that a garlic tasting is the only way to truly appreciate the difference between the garlics. So I bought four (and probably already screwed up the names):

1. Inchellium Red

Inchellium Red

Inchellium Red

2. Lortz Italian

Lortz Italian

Lortz Italian

3. Chesnok



4. Music



The next weekend, I was in the mountains and decided I should test the special garlic. Instead of trying them raw, like a true garlic connoisseur, I roasted two cloves from each on a dry pan over medium-high heat. When each clove’s skin was thoroughly charred and the clove soft, I knew they were done. I smeared each clove on a piece of toasted bread drizzled with EVOO and sprinkled with salt.

Truly, you can tell a difference! Some garlic is very hot to the taste, overwhelming the senses. Others, like the “Music” are soft and buttery, with such a sweet and mellow flavor. After a few bites of each toast, we threw some pieces of heirloom tomato and basil on each and called it lunch.

The carnage

I won’t say that I’ll seek out heirloom garlic for my next recipe, but it was fun to taste different flavors of something I considered all the same.

Oh, and if you want to host your own tasting, I recommend doing it at a remote mountain cabin, where nobody outside has to smell you! Enjoy, friends xoxo