Amethyst: lavender-honey gemstone cookies

It has been a minute since I made any of my gemstone cookies, so I felt like I needed to bring out a new flavor! I still have a lot of lavender from the last time I used it(yes, that was over a year ago), so I wanted to use some of it in this recipe. Not a lot of it, since that would just taste like edible soap, but just enough to give these cookies a little more fragrance and personality. For the cookies themselves, I used three different kinds of honeys and bee pollen just to bring home that honey flavor – manuka honey has a gorgeous texture and a royal jelly-like richness to it, lavender honey brings in the lavender flavor, but in a pleasant manner, while clover honey has a bitterness that balances out the sweetness well. In a pinch, feel free to sub out the three honeys with just one, as I know that it’s a huge ask of anyone making this recipe to actually purchase all three, but I just so happened to have all three in my pantry, so I opted to use them just to give my cookies a lot more complexity and honey-forward flavor!

For the “gems”, I went with my usual technique of making essentially a Turkish delight, but flavoring them with lavender, and dying them purple with acai powder, just to keep them a pleasant purple color, even after the baking process! I had to be extremely careful with the lavender, as it can be extremely strong and potent, hence why I opted to use it only in the gemstones, where the flavor will be diluted heavily by the other ingredients in there. The last thing I want is to make soap bar cookies. That would be an entertaining nightmare. If you were to accidentally add too much lavender essence into the mixture, so long as it is an alcohol-based liquid, you can just reheat the gem mixture with some water and that will effectively cook out most of the alcohol and essence from the mixture(I am only saying this because I personally had to do that too). It’s important that you get the gems right, and do them first, as they need to be frozen solid so that you can fold them into the cookie dough without them losing their shape, and also because the potency of the lavender completely dictates the seasoning levels of the rest of your cookie(too much lavender and you’ll probably need to halve the amount of gems you’re using in the cookie dough, for example). Either way, stick closely to the measurements that I have provided, and you should have little to no issues with the lavender being too strong or not present enough!

For the lavender “gems”:
1/2 cup cornstarch
2 packets gelatin powder
1 tspn lemon juice
2 cups water
1/4 cup granulated sugar
a pinch of salt
1/4 tspn lavender essence
1/2 tspn vanilla extract
1 tspn acai powder

In a pot, mix together the cornstarch, gelatin, lemon juice, water, granulated sugar, and salt first. Once everything is combined and there are no more lumps, whisk the ingredients over high heat until completely translucent and thick enough to cling to the sides of your whisk. Take off heat and whisk in the remaining ingredients. Pour into a nonstick shallot container and freeze for 1 hour to firm up. Cut into 1/4 inch by 1/4 inch cubes and keep in the freezer for at least 4 more hours so that they hold their shape when you fold them into the cookie dough.

For the honey cookie dough:
2 sticks unsalted butter
1/4 cup manuka honey
1/4 cup lavender honey
1/2 cup clover honey
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 eggs
a pinch of salt
1 tspn vanilla extract
1 tspn baking powder
1 tspn baking soda
Lavender “gems”
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup bee pollen

Whip the butter with honey and sugar for 10 minutes. Fold into that the eggs, salt, vanilla, baking powder, and baking soda first. Then fold in your frozen-solid lavender “gems”, then the flour and bee pollen. Scoop into 3 tbsp-sized balls and space them out about 3 inchs apart from one another on lined sheet trays. Bake at 350 degrees F for 14 minutes, rotating halfway through to guarantee even baking.

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