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Edible Flowers

Saturday, June 29, 2013

To everything there is a season

and the season for edible flowers is just beginning here in Florida for my herbs. Basil and mint are flowering their little seeds out right now.

Squash blossoms are all done, as are all the flowers from my greens and garlics as they bolted.

But many of you are in areas of the country where the seasons are different and plants might still be flowering. Think about using them in your salads, soups, and other dishes.

My favorites:

1. Chopped squash blossoms as the last ingredient added to an omelette or stir fry

2. Basil flower heads: add to vinaigrettes or any recipe where you'd use basil. I consider the flavor to be a little more mellow than the leaves, but that might be variety specific. I don't use all of them because these plants reseed and volunteer readily. But I don't need 5000 new basil plants!!

3.Mint flower heads: great in tea and it helps to keep mint in check. You DEFiNiTELY do NOT need 10,000 mint plants.

Blending mint leaves in water and freezing makes delicious ice cubes. Freeze in a special shape for a floater in a punch bowl for a party.

Try blending 1/2 cup plain Greek Yogurt, 1/2 T. plain cocoa powder, 1 /2 T honey, with a mint flower stem (or mint leaves.) (think mint girl scout cookies) For a special dessert: add 1/2 frozen banana to the above mixture and process in a high speed blender like a Nutribullet. Very fresh, summery dessert!

4. Passion flower tea (I dehydrate the flowers),
5. marigold petals in a salad to spice it up
6. violets on a frozen blueberry/banana dessert. They are also beautiful frozen in ice cubes for a luncheon.

Actually all edible flowers are beautiful when frozen in water as ice cubes or a larger shape for a punch bowl. Easy to color coordinate with the theme for your special meal.

You only need your garden OR an overgrown field of weeds, your imagination or sense of adventure, to spice up your meals this summer.

Need more information:

Be sure to watch the video there--lots of info and pictures to help you identify the flowers which are edible.
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