Lemon verbena

Lemon verbena has a bright, slightly sweet, herbaceous flavour with a distinct hint of lemon. Despite its strong lemon scent, this citrusy herb has a far less aggressive lemon flavor than lemon balm, lemon thyme, lemon mint, and lemongrass.

This lemon-scented herb has a number of culinary uses ranging from rich roasts to sweet citrusy desserts and jams. Lemon verbena can be used to make flavourful olive oil-based salad dressings, subtle lemon ice cream, and lemon verbena jelly, as well as season poultry dishes, salsa verde, and soups. It can be used in place of lemon zest or dried lemon as a more subtle addition to dishes, or infused into pantry ingredients like sugar and vinegar.

In Europe and other global destinations, tea lovers combine lemon verbena leaves with hot water to create a popular herbal tea known as Louisa in England, “te de cedron” in Mexican kitchens, and Luiza in Greek households. This kind of tea is also popular among French, Spanish, and Italian drinkers. Lemon verbena can also be used to make a flavorful iced tea or lemonade made with fresh lemon juice, lemon verbena, simple syrup, and mint leaves.

Lemon verbena tea made with fresh lemon verbena leaves and boiling water is commonly used to relieve the symptoms of colds including chills, fever, and congestion. Lemon verbena essential oil is also used topically to relieve muscle pain.

Banana Cake

This cake is the perfect think to make when you have some bananas from the past week which are bit over-ripe. Not only will you be using them up and not wasting anything, but your friends and family will love you for doing so.

Serves 8-10

125 g butter, softened
45 g brown sugar
220 gr castor sugar
3 eggs
300 g plain flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
180 g sour cream
1 cup roughly mashed ripe banana
caramel sauce

Preheat the oven to 180° C. Place the butter, caster sugar and brown sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat until light and creamy.

Gradually add the eggs and beat well. Sift the flour and baking powder over the mixture. Add the cinnamon, sour cream and banana and stir to combine.

Spoon the mixture into a greased loaf tin. Bake for about 40 - 50 minutes or until cooked when tested with a skewer. Cool on a wire rack.

Make the caramel sauce, according to the recipe given. Serve warm drizzled over the cake.

We, the Amsterdam Flavours chefs, hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do. If you have any questions on how to prepare it or just want to send us your feedback, you can reach us here Contact Amsterdam Flavours

Walnut Cake with Spiced Caramel Sauce

220 g butter, at room temperature
240 g caster sugar
4 eggs
160 g fine semolina
2 teaspoons baking powder
300 g walnuts

300g caster sugar
300 ml cream
1 star anise
½ cinnamon stick
25g butter


Preheat the oven to 180C. Place the walnuts on a baking tray and toast them lightly in the oven, about 8-10 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool. Reduce the oven temperature to 160C. Grease a 24 cm round springform tin or small fluted tins, of your choice.

Place the butter and sugar in a bowl of a mixer and beat until light and fluffy. Beat the eggs in, one at a time, until well combined.

Place the walnuts in a food processor and blend until finely ground.

Stir the baking powder through the semolina and fold through the egg and butter mixture, followed by the ground walnuts.

Spoon the batter into the greased cake tins and bake in the oven for about 35 minutes (large cake) or about 20 minutes (for the small cakes). Remove from the oven, cool in the tin for about 5 minutes before turing out onto a wire rack to cool completely before covering with the caramel.

For the spiced caramel sauce, heat the sugar in a pan until it turns golden-brown. Pour the cream in carefully and bring to the boil, stirring well. Add the star anise, cinnamon and butter. Cook for 2-3 minutes until thickened and smooth.

Strain through a fine sieve, cool completely and pour over the cake before serving.

We, the Amsterdam Flavours chefs, hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do. If you have any questions on how to prepare it or just want to send us your feedback, you can reach us here Contact Amsterdam Flavours


'One for One'

In 2008, American traveler Blake Mycoskie befriended children in a village in Argentina and found they had no shoes to protect their feet. Wanting to help, he created TOMS, a company that would match every pair of shoes purchased with a pair of new shoes given to a child in need. One for One.

The company has since expanded into eyeware and coffee. With every pair purchased, Toms will help give sight to a person in need.  With every pack of coffee purchased, TOMS will give one week of clean water to a person in need.

The company recently opened a store in Amsterdam. We're all about giving back and helping those in need. Go in an show your support. Not only will you be treating yourself, but you'll be helping someone in the process, One for One.

For more information please visit TOMS.