Home-Made Lavender Sugar Recipe

lavender sugar

Lavender Sugar is one of those things I’ve always looked at and loved the idea of, but never really known what to do with. I’ve always liked crystallised lavender – it’s both pretty and tasty – but aside from medicinal or household use, I’ve never really known how to actually use lavender in food. Partly due to its strong flavour and partly due to its very floral flavour, it’s something you have to use with care, but should definitely use!lavender sugar Making lavender sugar couldn’t really be simpler – the two ingredients are in the name, after all. If you don’t have a food processor you can just mix the two and stir, but I like making the sugar just a little finer, so it’s not so crunchy. Be careful though – I don’t like making it icing sugar either! Just a finely granulated sugar is perfect.

Leave the lavender for a week or so, allowing the flavours to infuse thoroughly into the sugar.  You can make Lavender Sugar ahead as a hostess gift, Christmas gifts, wedding favours and other gifting opportunities, and even include a recipe card or two with the jar. It’s a cheap and beautiful gift to make!lavender sugar

Make the Lavender Sugar two weeks before you’re going to gift it, and make sure to leave instructions to use withing 9 -12 months, so aside from drying out, I can’t image the lavender would go bad!

Recipe for Lavender Sugar

Lavender Sugar Recipe
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Dessert, Sweet, Condiment
Cuisine: Foraged
Serves: 1kg
  • 2 tsp lavender flowers
  • 1kg white sugar
  1. Use a fork or your hands to remove the flowers from the stalk
  2. Add them to the food processor
  3. Add the sugar and blend together - depending on your food processor, adjust your speed to make sure you don't end up with icing sugar.
  4. In the Thermomix®, hit the Turbo button 2 - 3 times quickly.
  5. Decant the sugar into jars, and seal tightly.


lavender sugar

How To Make Fruit Vinegar

Foraging is a fantastic activity, but it’s hard work, so you want to utilise every scrap to best effect in whichever way you can.

Once I’ve made a syrup  from the berries I’ve harvested, I’m loathed to throw them out. Some say you can put them in an ‘adult pie’ or ice cream, but that doesn’t always work – blackberries, for example, are white as snow by the time the flavour’s been sucked out of them, or there’s simply nothing left of them.  Other fruits, however, like rose hips, hawthorns and elderberries, have enough left in them to make something else out of. Like second-use tea bags, they’re not the ultimate flavour, but they may just work out okay.

balsamic vinegar

I have a bundle of 100ml jars specifically for this purpose – when I’ve made a syrup, I pop the pulp into the jar and top it with vinegar – if it doesn’t work out, I’ve lost about 50ml vinegar. If it does work out… I have a delicious new fruit vinegar to enjoy.

Some fruits – like elderberries or fresh blackberries – will pretty immediately change the colour of the vinegar, but I’d still suggest leaving it for a few days – although I have also done it about a year down the line, having forgotten about it! Others – like hawthorn – may take about a day to change the colour of the vinegar, but it’ll come.

To start, you’ll need equal parts fruit to vinegar, so lets say 600g fruit to 600ml apple cider vinegar. Now, I don’t normally set out to make vinegar, but rather use leftover bits of fruit or used pulp to make the vinegar, so you can be flexible with the amounts. I tend to use what I have, cover it with vinegar, and hope for the best!

That makes the next bit a little more tricky – or a good opportunity to practice maths and fractions!

After  at least four days of soaking in the vinegar, strain out the fruit and pour the vinegar into a pot on a medium heat.  For every 600ml liquid you need about 300g sugar – add less or more, depending on how sweet or how thick you want the vinegar. Add the sugar and stir till it is all dissolved. Leave to simmer for 15-25 minutes (adjusting depending on how much you’ve started with – the longer it boils the thicker it will be) without a lid on, which will reduce the liquid into a thick and delicious vinegar for dressings or dipping. If it’s not thick enough, simmer a little longer, but do bear in mind that as the vinegar cools, it’ll thicken too.

True balsamic improves with age. If you’re disciplined and have the space, use 3/4 of your vinegar now, but put aside a small jar of each batch in the back of the cupboard somewhere. I discovered a forgotten blackberry balsamic in the back of a cupboard when we moved house – it was about five years old, thick, sweet and incredible!

How To Make Fruit Vinegar
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
  • 600g fruit
  • 600ml white wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar
  • 300g sugar
  1. In a glass jar, add fruit and cover with vinegar. Leave for at least four days, shaking whenever you pass by it.
  2. When it's taken on good colour, strain out the fruit and pour the vinegar into a pot on a medium heat.
  3. Add the sugar and stir till it is all dissolved.
  4. Leave to simmer for 20 - 25 minutes without a lid on, which will reduce the liquid into a thick and delicious vinegar for dressings or dipping.
Thermomix® Instructions
  1. In a glass jar, add fruit and cover with vinegar. Leave for four days, shaking whenever you pass by it.
  2. After four days, strain out the fruit and pour the vinegar into the Thermomix®.
  3. Add the sugar 15 mins/ Varoma/speed 1/ NO MC


Easter Egg Macaroons {DF, GF, EF, RSF}

Easter Egg Macaroons

This is not a new recipe for me – we make chocolate macaroons frequently – but I decided to make it into Easter Eggs for the children to decorate, so we’re sharing it again, all seasonal like.Easter Egg Macaroons

I used egg moulds to make these Easter egg halves, but you could make whole eggs by hand too.  Depending on where you are (temperature) and whether you use organic coconut or not, you may need a little extra coconut oil. If that’s the case, just add a tablespoon at a time at the end of the mixing process. The  mixture does need to be able to hold together.

Easter Egg Macaroons {DF, GF, RSF}
  • 50g Coconut Oil (1/4 cup)
  • 70g honey or syrup (1/4 cup)
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 30 - 50g cocoa powder (1/3 cup)
  • pinch of fine sea salt or Himalayan pink salt
  • 150g shredded unsweetened coconut (1.5 cups)
Regular Instructions
  1. Melt the coconut oil in a pot - this requires 37C, i.e. body heat, and is still considered raw, or uncooked.
  2. Add the honey or syrup and stir till it's all mixed and liquid and remove from heat
  3. Add the vanilla extract
  4. (If using banana, mash it and add to the mix)
  5. Add 30g cocoa first then add the coconut
  6. (Add chia seeds if using)
  7. Stir till it's all combined
  8. Taste the mix too see if it's the right amount of chocolatey. If you want it 'darker' add more cocoa powder till it's right for you. Mix again.
  9. Scoop out onto a tray, or into moulds and refrigerate until it hardens.
  10. Keep cool as it will fall apart if the coconut oil gets too warm.
Thermomix® Instructions
  1. Put the coconut oil in the bowl, and melt 37C/Speed 1/ 20 Seconds (you'll need a bit longer if the weather is cold) Make sure it's melted though, or it won't be liquid enough to hold everything together)
  2. Add the honey or syrup and mix 37C/Speed 1/ 30 Seconds.
  3. Add the vanilla extract
  4. Add 30g cocoa first then add the coconut
  5. Mix speed 2/ 15 seconds
  6. Taste the mix too see if it's the right amount of chocolatey. If you want it 'darker' add more cocoa powder till it's right for you. Mix again speed 2/15 seconds.
  7. Scoop out onto a tray, or into moulds and refrigerate until it hardens.
  8. Keep cool as it will fall apart if the coconut oil gets too warm.


Jellybean Fudge

Jellybean Fudge

Sometimes a reader will get in touch with a question about a recipe that didn’t work for them, and it always makes me really nervous, so much so that I have to make the recipe as soon as I can to just check it again, to make sure I didn’t leave anything out. Jellybean Fudge

That happened this week, making the White Chocolate and Glace Cherry Fudge, so it was the perfect excuse for me, having not made it since Christmas. I didn’t have any glacé cherries, however, so I grabbed what seemed like a suitable replacement: jellybeans. I was so pleased with how it worked out, I couldn’t help but share it.

Jellybean FudgeThis is a soft and delicious fudge, and the addition of the flavoured jellybeans makes for chewy flavour bursts. And it’s really pretty! I think this is a great Easter fudge, or if you stick to reds and pinks you could do it for Valentines day too.

Jellybean Fudge
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 50 pieces
  • 1 can condensed milk
  • 250g white sugar
  • 25g golden syrup
  • 125g butter
  • 200g white chocolate
  • 100g jelly beans
  1. Add condensed milk, sugar, syrup and butter to the Thermomix® bowl.
  2. Cook without MC at 100C speed 3 for 8 mins.
  3. Scrape down sides if needed, then cook Veroma, 20 mins speed 3 still without MC. While it's boiling, prepare the pan, break the chocolate into pieces and get the jellybeans ready.
  4. Add chocolate and mix on speed 4, reverse blades for 20 seconds, then quickly add the jelly beans and mix reverse blades 10 seconds speed 3.
  5. Working quickly, pour the mixture into a brownie tray
  6. Refrigerate for 3 -4 hours, cut and store in airtight container.


Candy Cane Vodka Recipe

A few days ago, on one of my myriad of Facebook groups for Thermomix® users, someone asked for a recipe for Candy Cane Vodka, and I thought “What a great idea!” I’ve already made strawberry vodka and Christmas Spiced Vodka for this Christmas, but I love the idea of a candy cane vodka too, so had to give it a go.

There are loads of recipes online for how to make Candy Cane Vodka, and one of the things to keep in mind is that no two candy cane brands are created equal, so the candy cane you use could affect the outcome and whether you need more or less. Also, if you use a more ‘organic’ or ‘healthy’ candy cane, the pink colour won’t show as well, and you’ll need to add some red food colouring.

You don’t need the same infusing time as you might with a fruit based vodka, and recipes online suggest anything from a couple of hours to four days and beyond. I can’t see this going bad for months (if ever!) so make it in advance if you can and let it infuse as best you can – but try it after a few hours or days to see how it’s doing.

If you use a Thermomix® or a food processor you can pulverise the candy canes into a powder (10 seconds/speed 10), but if you’re not in a hurry to drink it, you can also just break the candy canes to size so that they will fit in a jar, and they will melt within a few hours anyway.Candy cane

I used a jam funnel (just pull the middle bit out) to pour the powder into a different bottle – this is a small 350ml sized vodka, and I used a 500ml bottle so that there’s room for shaking and mixing.

As for ratio, I decided on roughly 15g candy cane per 100ml Vodka, so 40 – 50g candy cane in a 350ml bottle of Vodka, or 85 – 105g in a 750ml bottle. It’s not an exact science though. If you have any undissolved you can filter it out through a coffee filter.

TIP: Pour the candy canes into a dry funnel, then pour the vodka through, otherwise it gets wet and clumps and blocks the funnel.candy crush

Place the bottle of Candy Cane Vodka somewhere you pass by frequently so you can give it a shake as often as you can.

You can serve within about 4 hours, but it’s best left for a few days or even weeks.

Make a cocktail with chocolate liquor, or spike your hot chocolate, or simply drink over ice. It’s been a long time since I was a neat Vodka drinker (Oh how that reminds me of my friend Luis, who’d know my mood by sniffing the contents of my glass whenever he found me sitting at the bar. He was the first to know my (then) boyfriend and I had split up because I was drinking neat Vodka. P.S. Don’t ever tell my children this story!), so I like adding lemonade or something else sweet. But that’s my preference.

Candy Cane Vodka Recipe
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
This recipe makes enough for a 350ml bottle of Vodka, with a couple of 'tester' shots extra. You can easily multiply this recipe
Serves: 400ml
  • 40 - 50g Candy Canes (4 - 6 medium sized)
  • 350ml Vodka (good quality)
  1. Crush the Candy Canes in a plastic bag. Use a mallet or rolling pin.
  2. (If using a Thermomix®: Add the Candy Canes to the Thermomix® and blitz 10 seconds/speed 10)
  3. Pour Candy Cane powder into a jar or bottle and top with the vodka
  4. Close and shake frequently, allowing flavours to combine for at least three days.
  5. Serve (or store in a sealed jar till ready for gifting)

A Very Thermie ChristmasA Very Thermie Christmas has a Christmas Spice Vodka and 50 other recipes for all your Thermomix® Christmas needs. With everything from snacks to meals, finger foods to festive drinks and DIY gifts A Very Thermie Christmas has your Christmas covered.  Just £8.99 (excl VAT in EU) this printable PDF can be yours in minutes.

Christmas Hamper Gift Ideas For The Thermomix®

Christmas Hampers

It’s the gifting time of year and one of the bonuses of owning a Thermomix® is the ability to make things from scratch, often for less. Below is a list of over 100 recipes from plenty of bloggers around the world filled with ideas that can be turned into gifts for Christmas.

Don’t forget, if you want all your Christmas ideas in one place, A Very Thermie Christmas offers over 50 recipes for gifts, drinks, sweets, and foods to see you through the festive season.

Happy gifting!

Christmas Hampers

Thermomix® Baked Goods:

The Thermomix® Diaries has a beautiful Hazelnut Shortbread Tree that would make a stunning host gift

There’s a Orange and Almond Shortbread recipe that I really love too.  And TRTLMT has a lovely Spiced Shortbread

Pinterest loves Tenina’s Snowy Peppermint Oreos and for good reason!

And another recipe from Mother Hubbard’s Cupboard that looks fantastic is the Chocolate Chip Short Bread. Doesn’t it look great? IMG_1574

Iron Chef Shellie has a Stollen recipe that looks superb. I’ve only tried stollen once and it didn’t turn out well, so I’m excited to try this recipe this year! Or go Italian with a Panettone recipe from Bec’s Table.

A Canadian Foodie has a recipe for Italian Biscotti with Almonds and Orange Zest

Mrs D Plus 3 has a Thermomix® Christmas Cake recipe based on Nigella Lawson’s cake

ThermOMG’s DIY Oreo’s look pretty delicious too! 

Thermomix® Preserved Gifts – Jams, Relishes, Chutneys

Journal of a French Foodie’s offering of Cranberry and Red Onion Relish is a rich red colour and looks beautiful.

For the adventurous – and the bacon lovers – head over to Thermofun for Bacon Jam. Try it if you dare!ThermoFunBaconJam

ThermOMG’s Mango chutney looks like a tasty fruit chutney variant, or use Cookipedia’s Mango and Pear option.

Cinnamon flavored Red-wine poached pears served with Nasturtium flowers look amazing – though possibly the wrong season for a winter Christmas as compared to a summer Christmas, but oh well. And you can try strawberries in cardamom syrup too.

Becs Table has an unusual looking, but delicious sounding Strawberry Lemonade Concentrate that I’m keen to try myself!

Clementine Vinegar sounds seasonally perfect for this time of year, and could it be any easier?!

Mrs D Plus 3 has a great fruit mince recipe that doesn’t contain lard, but does have dried cranberries and apple cider vinegar – it’s unusual but sounds delicious.

Thermomix® Seasonings & Sauces

Garlic Seasoning and Tuscan Seasoning from Peta at TRTLMT are both thoughtful gifts that will last long past Christmas. And here’s a good Garam Masala seasoning too.

Tenina has a Spiced Orange and Cranberry Sauce recipe for your festive ham or turkey, and Mouthwatering has a lovely cranberry and white wine sauce too. Thermomix®in’ it up has a mint sauce recipe that will go well with lamb.  And Quirky’s BBQ sauce is always popular.

More than a sauce – a BBQ Sauce! – will be a great host gift, especially for those lucky enough to be having BBQ weather.

Thermomix® Sweets

Super Kitchen Machine has a very interesting looking Salt Chocolate Bacon Bark

A Canadian Foodie has an amazing almond paste and pistachio paste recipe for making Lady Baltimore Cake – or whatever else you could want to do with these lovely pastes

Easy Caramel Fudge from Little Bit of Thyme is a good basic all rounder. Or if you’re looking for something amazing, there’s Super Kitchen Machine’s White Chocolate & Baileys Festive Fudge Recipe which looks very festive. Pistachio Fudge Recipe for Thermomix®

Jane from Why is there Air? has an amazing chocolate and strawberry rocky road recipe that we made last year. It’s a fantastic recipe!

The Creative Mummy has a Thermomix® Nougat Recipe that can only make for delicious gifts

Thermomix® Honeycomb  couldn’t be simpler than this recipe from One Girl And Her Thermie.

The Bailey’s Surprise Recipe from One Crafty Mum make a great treat.


Helene from Super Kitchen Machine has this wonderful Chocolate Salami that is famous on the Facebook groups every year too.

Mother Hubbard’s Cupboard has a recipe for Rum Balls – a definite winner to have around for Christmas.

Quirky Cooking’s dairy free Salted Caramel Chocolates are good for making sure our dairy free friends don’t miss out.dairy free salted caramel chocolates quirky cooking

Sea Salted Praline Pecan Clusters make a lovely snack for a cold evening, and Thermofun has just the recipe for you.

Apricot Bites from The Road To Loving My Thermo Mixer in a pretty jar are a healthier treat that still feels like the festive season.

Thermomix® Drinks

Journal of a French Foodie has a recipe for Limoncello that’s definitely on my Christmas list

Easy Advocaat is an accustomed taste – Egg Liqueur – but it’s a great talking point for a gift too!

DIY Chai Tea makes a nice gift, but also a warming winter evening drink

Beauty Products

Everyone loves pampering and a hamper of winter spice sugar scrub, peppermint salt scrub or a lavender and rose scrub are a good place to start.

Add Quirky’s moisturiser and you’re half way there.

Peta Lee from The Road to Loving My Thermo Mixer has a Chocolate Coconut Body Scrub that sounds amazing, and a lemon hand scrub that would be ideal for winter skin.
Tebasiles Kitchen also has a Calendula Salve that looks simple and easy to make

Recipes for children’s gifts

Coconut Ice is a winner for hampers as it lasts a long time, and this is a no cook version that’s great for kids to make.

TRTLMT has a lovely vanilla hot chocolate mix you can make up for gift jars

Thermomix® Playdough from ThermoFun will make for hands on, simple fun

Nut Seed and Chocolate Bars are fun and at least hint at healthy and Candy Cane Bark couldn’t be more Christmassy if it tried.  And the Thermomade Freckles are perfect for kids too.


DIY Garam Masala

For Garam Masala, I’ve discovered, there are about as many recipes as their are people making it. There isn’t one authentic, or one original recipe, but rather it seems to be a matter of personal choice.DIY Garam Masala Spices

For a long time I would say that I didn’t like curries. I think this was because every curry I ever had from a takeaway was just an overkill of hot and I didn’t find that very pleasant. It was only when a friend served me a curry she made that I realised that there was a world of flavour out there that I knew very little about.  Over the recent years I’ve learned to enjoy curries – but only those I make, so that I manage the heat!DIY Garam Masala Spice Mix

Garam Masala is the foundation for many North Indian and South Asian dishes, but I’ve also learned that it can add amazing flavour to any meat dish without specifically making it a curry. Garam Masala actually means ‘warm spices’ and that’s precisely what these spices do – they add a warm depth of flavour to the meal.DIY Garam Masala

As with all spices, if you’re able to blend it fresh when you need it, the flavours are stronger and richer, but I make a small amount at a time so that I make a fresh batch every month or so. You can freeze this and take it out as you need it, or just store in an airtight container. DIY Garam Masala Gift

DIY Garam Masala
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Since I prefer to make this mix up fresh as often as possible, I keep the quantities small, meaning the Thermomix® scales aren't useful here, so this recipe uses a 5ml teaspoon and a 15ml tablespoon.
Recipe type: Seasoning, Spicemix
Cuisine: Asian, Indian
Serves: 200g
  • 1 Whole nutmeg
  • 10 Whole cloves
  • 1 Cassia Stick (sold as cinnamon sticks in supermarkets)
  • 1 tsp Black Peppercorns
  • 2 tbs Coriander seeds
  • 1 tbs Cumin seeds
  • 1 tbs Fennel seeds
  • 1 tbs Cardamom pods (about 6 pods)
  • 1 tsp Cayenne pepper (add more if you prefer a hotter spice, or substitute for dried chillies)
  • 1 tsp Turmeric
  1. If you're using a Thermomix®, you can add all the ingredients to the bowl and whizz at speed 10 / 20 seconds. Check inside to confirm, but everything should be a fine powder.
  2. If you're not using a Thermomix® or similar high powered blender, add the first four ingredients, and blend for 30 seconds or until broken into pieces. Add the rest of the ingredients and blend for a further 30 - 60 seconds depending on your blender, until all the spices are crushed.
  3. Store in an airtight container and use within a month for the best flavours.


Five Healthy Valentines Day Recipes

Healthy Valentines

Are you planning and plotting your Valentines day menus yet? Here’s a selection of some of our favourites including treats and healthy sweets.

Five Healthier Valentines Recipes

Good For You Chocolate Coconut Macaroons

This is a brilliant recipe for children to get involved with, since it’s raw and doesn’t require any cooking. You need to melt the coconut oil, but you can do that at body temperature, so it’s yummy and fun and messy and makes for delicious gifts.

Raw Lime Coconut Chocolate Bliss Balls

Another raw recipe that children can happily help you make and it’s a little more exotic than your usual run of the mill chocolate.

Raw Nutty Chocolate Mousse

In retrospect, I don’t think this should have been called mousse. It’s more of a pudding than a mousse, but it’s delicious. And it’s raw and pretty healthy too.

Healthy Chocolate Date Balls

Date balls, bliss balls, power balls… they’re pretty much the same thing, and we make them all the time. These are the foundation of most other bliss balls, and if you’d like to try other bliss ball recipes, have a look at my Bliss Balls For Beginners eBook.

Raw “Ferrero” Bliss Balls Recipe

This is one of the recipes from Bliss Balls For Beginners, and while we think this is a great recipe, the important thing is that comments on the post think so too! It’s a great alternative to sugary treats.

I hope you enjoy these healthier Valentines Day recipes!

TimTam Fudge For Australia Day

timtam fudge

I absolutely love fudge, and the Thermomix® fudge recipe is simply amazing, even though I don’t like white chocolate. With Australia Day coming, I really wanted to have a go at making something Australia themed and it dawned on me that a nice crunchy bit of biscuit in fudge could be very tasty – and so TimTam fudge came in to being.

I decided to use a recipe I already know and love, but swapped out white chocolate for dark, and TimTams for cherries.

One thing to note is that this does marginally change the consistency of the fudge. It isn’t as ‘clean’ as a normal fudge, but it is very tasty.

I used Turkish Delight TimTams because that’s what I had, but I do rather wish I had all the other flavours to make a variety of TimTam flavoured fudges… for, you know… Australia Day.TimTam Fudge

Click here for a variety of TimTams from Amazon

P.S. I’ll post a photo of the finished product shortly

5.0 from 1 reviews
TimTam Fudge
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Try any TimTams for a choice of flavours. If you can't get TimTams, plain Penguin biscuits will work just as well.
Recipe type: Sweets
Cuisine: Australian
Serves: 48
  • 1 can Farm Lea condensed milk
  • 250g raw sugar
  • 25g golden syrup
  • 125g butter
  • 200g dark chocolate broken into blocks
  • 10 TimTams or Penguin chocolate biscuits
  1. Add condensed milk, sugar, syrup and butter to the Thermomix® bowl.
  2. Cook 100C speed 3 for 8 mins.
  3. Scrape down sides if needed, then cook Veroma, 20 mins speed 3.
  4. Add chocolate and whole TimTams and mix on speed 3 for 20 seconds.
  5. Pour into brownie tray. If some TimTams aren't broken up, crush them with the spatula.
  6. Refrigerate for 3 -4 hours, cut and store in airtight container.