This weekend I attended an Open Day at a local Lavender Farm and to say I enjoyed my time there is an understatement!
Lavender has long been a favourite of mine, going back to the start of my Yoga journey in 1995 when I decided to use Aromatherapy along with Yoga to heal myself from my awful panic attacks. Lavender is known as a calming and relaxing herb and has frequently been used for insomnia, anxiety, depression, and natural stress relief.
Most of us are aware that Lavender has so many healing properties, it has antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties, and can be used as a natural mosquito repellent and of course not forgetting it smells divine!……AND it tastes pretty good too!……whilst there I felt it was my duty to give the Lavender shortbread a try and it was absolutely delicious. I intend to give them a go myself later this week using the recipe below.
MARY BERRY LAVENDER SHORTBREAD BISCUITS
175g softened unsalted butter
2 tbsp fresh, unsprayed, finely chopped lavender flowers (pick them off the stems to measure)
100g caster sugar
225g plain flour
25g demerara sugar
How to prepare
Lightly grease three large baking trays. Put the softened butter and the lavender into a mixing bowl and beat together (this will obtain the maximum flavour from the lavender).
Beat the caster sugar into the butter and lavender and then stir in the flour, bringing the mixture together with your hands and kneading lightly until smooth.
Divide the mixture in half and roll out to form two sausage shapes 15cm (6in) long. Roll the biscuit “sausages” in the demerara sugar until evenly coated. Wrap in baking parchment or foil and chill until firm.
Pre-heat oven to 160C/Fan 140C/325F/Fan 275F/Gas 3. Cut each “sausage” into about 10 slices and put them on the prepared baking trays, allowing a little room for them to spread. Bake for 15 to 20 mins, until the biscuits are pale golden brown at the edges. Lift them off the trays with a fish slice or palette knife and leave on a wire rack to cool completely.
I am a pretty good sleeper most nights, but last night particularly, I had the best sleep ever. I was totally relaxed from my fragrant day amongst the purple heaven!
Relaxing mind and body techniques.
- Progressive Muscle Relaxation
- Guided Imagery
Gives the heart a rest by slowing the heart rate
Reduces blood pressure
Slow the rate of breathing, which reduces then need for oxygen
Increases blood flow to the muscles
Decreases muscle tension
As a result of relaxation, you may experience:
Smoother emotions – less anger, crying, anxiety, frustration
Less headaches and pain