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One month into the extract experiment, I finally decided to test my wares. This weekend I baked my delicious Lavender and White Chocolate Brownies using my homemade lavender extract! Not entirely sure how much lavender extract one would usually use, so I added to taste, which amounted to 3 teaspoons. I did feel that this was a little too much, so I decided to intensify the flavour a bit. I drained out all the old lavender (which had totally discoloured by this point) and added another 1/2 cup dried lavender and a splash more vodka, shook it up and re-sealed it.

As I was vamping up the lavender extract, I decided to do the same with the vanilla and orange extracts too. I just added a couple of pods and some extra vodka to the vanilla extract since it was looking pretty healthy anyway, but the orange extract was looking fairly sorry for itself, so I chucked in the peel of 2 more large oranges. I think I will try out my Chocolate Orange Brownies with it this weekend and let you know how they turn out. The earl grey extract is looking a lovely shade of syrup-y brown and smells promisingly strong, so I didn’t touch that. I will need to test that out this weekend too, so watch this space.

Since I have modified the recipe for the extracts, I have updated the initial post so that it’s all up to date. I’ve set my sights on a new project now; rose extract! I’ve been thinking about trying rose flavoured brownies for my Valentine’s seasonal special, so I need to work out how best to add the flavour. I’m not sure whether the alcohol will be too strong for delicate rose petals, but we shall see.

It took me forever to find organic rose petals online! apparently most rose petals will have been sprayed with pesticides (not the kind of thing you want to be putting in cakes!), so organic or ‘culinary’ rose petals it had to be. Steenbergs seem to be the main suppliers, but they sell small pots of rather ill-looking petals for a fairly high price. In the end I stumbled across a gorgeous delicatessen based in London that sold them quite reasonably (50g for £1.99). Melbury & Appleton also sell all sorts of quality deli produce, ingredients and kitchen accessories, so it’s well worth a look if you’re curious. I’m hoping the petals will arrive by next week, so I’ll be posting more information on the latest stage of the Great Extract Experiment soon! x

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