Saturday 10 September 2016

Mary Berry Lavender Shortbread Biscuits

The area around where I live in Surrey is known for its lavender – in fact, it was once known as the lavender capital of the world. In the summer there are beautiful purple fields stretching into the distance. Apparently Yardley, a British toiletries brand that is known for lavender talcum powder, ties back to the area but eventually cheaper French lavender flooded the market and a lot of the lavender fields in Surrey were given over to housing estates.

Now, there are two main operators of the lavender fields, at least that I'm aware of. Mayfield Lavender is a commercial enterprise, but still a family-run farm; they are open every day through June, July and August where you can buy lavender plants and products. I've never been and it's not clear to me from their website whether you can actually pick your own lavender or not - I would assume so, but can't be sure!

The place that I've preferred to go to over the last couple of years is the non-profit allotment run by Carshalton Lavender. It's a volunteer-led project and they have an annual harvest one weekend a year (this year it was at the end of July) where you can go and pick your own lavender. They charge a reasonable £5 for a large bunch and £10 for a bucket-ful, and there are stands selling food and drinks, cakes and lavender products. That's me in the photo above picking lavender.

My husband and I went with some friends who live locally and I picked a large bunch of lavender, as I was planning to do various things with it from baking to making lavender bags (if I ever get around to using my sewing machine!).

It was my father-in-law's birthday not long after and he really likes shortbread, so I decided to make him some lavender shortbread with local lavender, and parcel a few pieces (as he isn't meant to be eating much sugar) up as a gift.

I used this Mary Berry recipe - lavender shortbread seems a very Mary Berry thing to make. It was very easy to make though you do need to factor in chilling time for the dough - I actually did mine overnight.

Here's the lavender that I picked:

I made up the dough and added the lavender

Make into a cylinder, roll in brown sugar, wrap in foil or parchment and chill in the fridge until firm.

Slice into rounds and bake in the oven

The finished product

 I'm sharing these with Treat Petite, hosted by Kat at the Baking Explorer and Stuart at Cakeyboi.


  1. nice picture of you in the lavender field.

  2. Those lavendar fields look gorgeous and a great idea to bake with the lavendar! Thanks for linking up to #TreatPetite


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