I’ve been all about lavender lately. I stash it in the Marionberry jam I make. I’ve added it to dark chocolate cupcakes on a whim. It’s also appeared in my linzer cookies. Lavender is such an unexpected addition that I’m wanting to find more ways to incorporate it, without it being overpowering. These honey lavender mini cakes are the perfect thing to satisfy your curiosity!
I actually don’t like really strong lavender scents. Soaps and candles can have too much lavender added. I like a nice, mellow scent that doesn’t bombard my senses.
These honey lavender mini cakes are so good. I mean just a bit of lavender added to the batter makes these so appealing. They would be wonderful little gifts for friends or co-workers. Or a mom you know that needs a pick-me-up after a long day with kids.
I bought the mini loaf pans at a Home Goods store. My plan was to go in there looking for another cake stand. However I found these instead. I can always use more pans and everything at Home Goods is a bargain!
There’s a secret ingredient in these cakes that improves the flavor and texture of the honey lavender cakes so well. Can you guess what it is?
It’s creme fraiche! This is similar to sour cream, but it bakes up better. I like the tanginess of sour cream in a banana bread or to top off a chili. But creme fraiche adds this wonderful richness to your baked goods.
And it’s so easy to make. I’ve never bothered buying creme fraiche at the market, because I likely have the ingredients to make my own. I’ll add a note in the recipe how to make your own. But it requires only heavy cream, buttermilk, and a large glass jar.
If you don’t have a source for lavender yet, check out Olive Nation brand. They have extracts, like lavender, as well as culinary dried lavender. I’ve used at least five different extracts and they have added a great depth of flavor to my baked good.
For the mini cakes:
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup | 7 ounces granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 3/4 cups | 8.75 ounces all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup creme fraiche *
For the lavender icing
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 tablespoon whole milk
- 1 tablespoon creme fraiche
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- purple gel food coloring
To make the cakes:
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees and position rack in lower middle.
- In a medium bowl combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, lavender, and salt. Set aside
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter until light and fluffy, about 30 seconds. Add the sugar, honey, and vanilla and continue beating until combined.
- Add eggs, one at a time, scraping between each addition.
- Alternate the flour mixture and creme fraiche and stir until combined, scraping down the sides of the bowl.
- Divide batter between four mini loaf or cake pans that have been sprayed with non-stick.
- Bake for 30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Cool completely on wire rack.
To make icing:
- In a medium bowl combine powdered sugar, creme fraiche, whole milk, and vanilla. Whisk until smooth. Add in a tiny amount of gel food coloring – more if you want it darker.
- Drizzle over cakes and serve immediately.
To make the creme fraiche: Place 2 cups heaving whipping cream and 2 tablespoons buttermilk in a large glass jar and stir to combine. Cover with a non-reactive (metal) lid and keep at room temperature between 8 and 24 hours. Refrigerate after this period and use over the next two weeks.
I do not receive any compensation for the products I recommend. I simply love what I’ve used and want you to know about them as well.0