Happy New Year! Barely a week into 2017 and we received about 8 inches of snow overnight. Mornings like these are breath taking! A fresh blanket of powdery snow all over the farm never gets old here in North Carolina. By noon today the sun was out and tonight bitter cold temperatures are moving in. I am grateful for the beautiful snowy scenes and don't mind the slow-down one bit. I took Margaret the chocolate lab for a long walk and did a ton of indoor work including trying out a yummy new lavender dessert. Enjoy the snow if you can and enjoy the tart (recipe below). I hope things are pretty and well wherever you are. Spring is coming.
Chocolate Lavender Tart: Combine 1 1/4 cups half-and-half, 2 tablespoons dried culinary lavender buds, 1 tablespoon sugar, and 2 tablespoons butter in a small saucepan; heat just until mixture comes to a simmer making sure butter is melted. Remove from heat and let stand for at least 30 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare crust. Place 8 graham crackers and 1/2 cup walnuts in food processor; top with cover and process until crumbly. Transfer crumbs to a bowl and add 1 tablespoon sugar and 1/4 cup melted butter, stirring until well mixed. Press crumb mixture evenly in bottom of a 8 x 11-inch rectangular or 9-inch round tart pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes; remove from oven and set aside. Place 12 ounces bittersweet chocolate chips in a large microwave-safe bowl; microwave on high for 2 minutes or until melted, rotating after one minute. Place a thin-mesh strainer over bowl; pour lavender mixture through strainer, pressing lavender buds to extract all the liquid. (Reserve lavender buds for garnish.) Vigorously whisk or beat the chocolate mixture until completely smooth; pour into prepared crust. If desired, garnish with reserved lavender buds. Chill completely before serving.