After last weeks post about edible flowers I decided it was time to make my own floral cake. I happened to have pansies that I planted last winter blooming in my backyard so I decided why not? I took a bunch, gave them a rinse, and then laid them on a towel to dry. I paired it with a lemon cake covered in lavender icing - so light and yummy.
To save time, I used a box lemon cake and made my own lavender swiss meringue icing. I grew up on rose water extract and the lavender extract I used had a very similar floral taste. Both the lemon and the lavender have such subtle tastes, they were perfect paired together. It just reminded me of a very feminine and spring-like combination. I'm thinking this would be a perfect treat for mother's day!
Swiss Meringue Buttercream
adapted via this recipe
9 large egg whites, at room temperature ( I used pasteurized, boxed egg whites)
1/2 cup sugar
4 sticks salted butter (unsalted is fine), diced
2 tablespoons lavender extract
Using a double boiler and melt sugar into the egg whites. Make sure to keep the heat on low and to stir continuously. This will prevent the eggs from cooking. Remove from heat once the sugar has completely dissolved (when you rub your fingers together you shouldn't feel any sugar crystals). Whisk your egg white mixture until stiff peaks have formed and slowly add in the butter. If the mixture begins to curdle, set your blender on high and let it whisk until it gets to a creamy texture. Add lavender extract and blend.