Lavender Honey Almond Cake / by Julie Schumacher

Finding a dessert that doesn't need modification for food sensitivities or allergies can be a challenge when I have my heart set on some dairy-dense, gluten-full creation. Scratch that. There are tons of modifications and alternative recipes out there. It can be a thing, though, to have stores of a wide variety of flours and specialty ingredients. I have them now, usually, and it's totally worth it, of course, but it's great when a single dish tics all the boxes at the start.

This almond cake? Made with lavender honey? And served with creme fraiche, even more honey and oodles of plump blackberries? Check. Check. Checkity check. It's also free of refined sugar (thanks, honey).

Cheers to Anna of The Yellow Table, who shared the recipe and also answered a question sent to a three-year old post (if anyone things bloggers don't work hard they're full of it).

Honey gets its flavors from the nectar source of its maker bees. I found lots of wildflower honey but I, as I sometimes do, obsessed about finding a honey that had a specific floral note: lavender. In part because the recipe called for it but also because I have a great stash of dried lavender, I made my own. The house smelled insane and it took about 10 minutes of intermittent attention (with some overnight steeping).

This baby would make an incredible fancy tea cake and simultaneously feels like it's about to be sliced and served in the French countryside. It's dense and heavenly with hints of floral and sweet without being a sugar punch in the face (though those can be good too!).

I loved it in part because it is so organic and real looking. It's lumpy and bumpy and brown. When so often I'm thinking about how to make something pretty, this cake is beautiful.

An easy-to-please everyone dessert with honey leftover to enjoy? Heck year. I also love when baking becomes a bit of a culinary education, allowing me to research the chemistry happening in my kitchen or the reasons things taste the way they do. My new love of making flavored honey led to me Googling lots of honey things. This one, about why honey falls in twists, was pretty sweet.