Updated: Oct 4, 2020
I'm always looking for an excuse to bake and celebrate and there is no better way to bring joy to the day than baking (and eating) cookies. Especially these cookies as you can collect some of your ingredients on a glorious summer walk with the children!
Summer solstice marks the longest day of the year and when the suns power is at its strongest. In the UK solstice is traditionally known as Midsummer, but a lot of countries in the northern hemisphere have their own names for it. 'Litha' in Scandanavia, Kupala day in Latvia.
In Scotland and much of the UK the midsummer festival was traditionally a Celtic fire festival. Upon the arrival of Christianity to the shores of the UK, midsummer was adopted as St Johns Day, celebrating the birth of John the Baptist, at a time when religion and traditional beliefs could seemingly be held without conflict - farmers and villagers would still light fires to bless the crops and animals with the power of the sun, often lighting huge bonfires and walking cattle around the fire in a sun-wise direction.
Herbs and flowers were traditionally gathered on solstice, believing their natural powers were at their strongest due to the suns rays, floral crowns adorned girls heads and posies were placed under pillows in the hopes that a future love would be revealed through dreams. Honey was often used in many traditional dishes, the sweet, rich bounty of the summer. So f course with all this sweetness in mind, and savoring the summer whilst its still here, these solstice honey cookies make a lovely celebratory treat.
1 and 3/4 cups of plain flour
75g softened butter
1/4 cup of Honey (runny honey)
1/4 cup soft light brown sugar
1 teaspoon fresh lavender buds
1 teaspoon chopped thyme
1 teaspoon chopped rosemary
1 teaspoon chopped sage
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
a pinch of salt
For the icing
1 cup of icing sugar
1 tablespoon water
Pinch of turmeric (optional for colour)
1/2 teaspoon Grated lemon zest
Preheat the oven to around 160 celcius
For the cookies, simply mix all the ingredients together into a bowl until well combined once the mixture all comes together roll it into a long log shape, wrap in cling film or kitchen foil and place in the fridge for twenty minutes or so to firm up.
After twenty minutes, unwrap the cookie roll and cut into sliced around half a centimetre to a centimetre thick, place on a baking sheet that has been greased and floured or lined with baking paper, bake for around 15 minutes in the centre of the oven, until the edges are golden brown. Once done remove from the oven and leave to cool.
To make the icing mix all the ingredients together being careful not to add too much liquid, the icing shouldn't be too runny, if it is add a little more icing sugar to thicken it up.
Once the cookies are cool decorate them with the icing and flowers and herbs from the garden, dandelion petals, thyme, calendula petals, lawn daisies and sprigs of rosemary and thyme
They are such fun to make and I really hope you enjoy the process just as much as the end result when you are enjoying eating them!