Wednesday, April 13, 2011

PEACE VALLEY LAVENDER FARM – Bucks County, PA, provides the special ingredient in Grilled Salmon with Lavender and Honey Lavender Ice Cream

The perfectly named Peace Valley Lavender Farm
I was quite intrigued when my sister first told me about a farm in Doylestown, PA that grew and harvested lavender. Even with expectations high considering the farms name and my sister’s gushing description, I still had one of those “oh my” moments once we reached our destination. I can’t imagine a more appropriately named location than Peace Valley Lavender Farm.  

The farm is perched on a hill, with fields of blue-violet blossoms carpeting a view of a rolling countryside that includes Peace Valley Park and Lake Galena. 

During our visit Patti Lyons, who is co-owner with her husband George, explained that they harvest several varieties of lavender used for products made in the farm's workshop.  

A quaint and well appointed gift shop on the premises provides a selection of products for bath & body, as well as floral arrangements and home decor products. Gift baskets on display during our visit seemed like perfect mother’s day gifts. For more information regarding the farm and their wide selection of products, visit their website here.

For those, like us, interested in the culinary applications of lavender, the shop sells lavender infused honey (8 oz. $6), Organic Dark Chocolate Bar with lavender ($3) and organic culinary lavender (5oz $6). Recipe cards with a small packet of product attached, such as the one we used to make the cookies above, are available for those wanting to try a sample ($2). (click "read more" for recipes, photos and to continue reading this post)

Lyons recommends a mid-late June visit to view the farm during the height of the lavender blooming season. However we can assure you, anytime, is a good time to visit Peace Valley Lavender Farm.

Grilled Salmon with Lavender
(Recipe provided by Peace Valley Lavender Farm)
In my version, I pan-seared the salmon.*
3 pounds Salmon Filet
4 Tbsp Honey*
6 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
½ tsp Lavender Flowers, crushed with mortar and pestle
¼ Cup White Wine
1 Tbsp Tamarind Paste (or Worcestershire Sauce)
1 tsp Lemon Juice

Mix all ingredients (except Salmon) in saucepan over medium heat. Stir with a wire whisk at all times until ingredients are reduced by one-third to create a sauce. Allow sauce to cool slightly then brush on salmon filet.

Grill salmon, basting with sauce occasionally, setting some aside to top when served.
Salmon is cooked when fish flakes with a fork.
To bake salmon, preheat oven to 350. Cover salmon with sauce, setting some aside to pour on salmon before serving. Bake for 10 minutes or until salmon flakes with a fork, basting occasionally.
* I recommend reducing the amount of honey by half if pan searing fish.

Lavender–Honey Ice Cream
(recipe from The Best of Ice Cream A Cookbook by Beverly Cox & Malvina C. Kinard USA 1994 by Collins Publishers San Francisco)
2 Cups whole milk
½ cup honey
1 to 1 ½ tsps dried lavender blossoms
4 thin strips each orange and lemon zest
6 large egg yolks
½ cup sugar
1/8 tsps salt
2 cups heavy cream, chilled
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp pure vanilla extract

In a medium saucepan, combine the milk, honey, lavender, and zests. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the honey. Remove the pan from the heat and allow the mixture to steep for 30 minutes. Strain the mixture through a fine sieve set over a medium bowl and set aside.

In the top of double boiler or a medium stainless steel bowl, whisk the yolks with the sugar and salt for 3-4 minutes, or until pale yellow. Gradually whisk in the mil mixture. Place the top of the double boiler or the bowl over a pan of simmering (not boiling) water and cook, stirring constantly, for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the custard thickens enough to coat the pack of a spoon. Remove the custard from the water and stir in the cream, lemon juice, and vanilla.

Chill the mixture for 30 minutes, then pour into an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer’s directions. Makes about 1 ½ quarts.

More recipes are available on the farm website

Peace Valley Lavender Farm
802 New Galena Road
Doylestown, PA 18901
Thurs. - Sat., 10AM - 5PM
Sun. - 12PM - 5PM


  1. I'm definitely going to put a field trip to Peace Valley on my calendar for June. Thanks for posting!

  2. You won't be disappointed. It's a lovely ride. If you have time, check out the Park and lade area. Pack a lunch.

    Jo Ann