Edible flowers! They’re on your brunch, they’re in your salad, they’re in your news feed – it’s safe to say they’re all up in your business. As their popularity grows, we’re discovering that these little guys are so much more than just a token garnish.
Medicinally, flowers have been used to alleviate ailments and heal illness for centuries. In Victorian England they had their own secret floral language, AND when it comes to eating them there are a great number of flowers that are full of flavour and nutrients!
Orchids are crisp and refreshing like cucumber, lavender buds are heady and strong like rosemary, nasturtiums are peppery and bittersweet and are a great way to add extra flavour to a salad. Plus - flower syrups are a fun way to infuse a bit of floral flavour and a literal splash of colour into a dish! The more I play with flowers the more I learn.
In the slideshows - just some of the ways I've incorporated edible flowers into my meals. Prawn and pansy parcels, lavender crusted lamb cutlets, a breakfast flower-bomb - any time of day is a good time for flowers!
If this is your first foray into flower-powered food, before you become a full-blown petal pusher here are some handy things to know, which will help your love for edible flowers bloom and grow.
EDIBLE FLOWER SPECIES:
Broad bean flower
ARE ALL FLOWERS EDIBLE?
NO. Though they’re beautiful, not all blooms are edible! Some are poisonous, even fatal. It’s important to check your blooms are edible before tossing them in a salad.
If you're unsure whether your petals are poisonous or plate-worthy - google is your friend, or have a look at my list of recommended edible flower species below. If in doubt, don't eat it!
WHERE CAN I GET ME SOME EDIBLE FLOWERS?
It’s best to either grow them yourself at home, or buy packets from your local grocer or markets that are specifically labelled as edible flowers.
If you're located in Australasia and were not blessed with green thumbs, or a green grocer who stocks edible blooms - you can order yours in batches of 6+ punnets from Petite Ingredient online here.
CAN'T I JUST GO TO MY LOCAL FLORIST?
NO. Whatever you do - please don't go and buy a bunch of flowers from your local florist and throw them in a frittata, even if you know the species is edible. More often than not, flowers at your florist are sprayed with chemicals and aren't fit for human consumption. Organic is the way to go!
The flowers I've listed are just a few of the edible flower species, there are many more out there. Have fun exploring, always check your blooms are edible before you eat them - and enjoy flower-powered food!