5 Edible Flowers You Can Find In Your Back Yard
It’s the first day of spring in the Southern hemisphere! Hurrah. Warmer weather is on the way, and with it some of my favourite things - fresh greens, Aussie asparagus and effervescent blooms of vibrant colour in the backyard.
Edible flowers are fast gaining popularity as creatively ‘out there’ ingredients in glittery restaurant circles, though plenty of regional cuisines have included flower-derived flavourings for centuries.
And for good reason too. Rainbow nutrition evidence tells us that coloured petals - of the edible variety - are stacked full of vitamins and phytonutrients, making them excellent diversification devices for delighting at dinnertime.
Oil and tea infusions, ice-cubed petals, throwing a few into a salad or merely decorating dishes for the ‘ooooh!’s of delight, here are a few commonly-found and perfectly edible* flowers for your springtime enjoyment.
*As with all gathered foods, be sure to wash everything well and don’t consume anything that might have been chemically sprayed.
A little goes a long way with lavender, as the blossoms are rich in strongly-flavoured aromatic oils. Use the whole flowers in baking, oil or tea infusions, to flavour jams and as a garnish.
Try a Lavender Shortbread.
Leaves and flowers of the Nasturtium plant can be eaten - the leaves have a peppery flavour great in soups, and the flowers make wonderful garnishes, ice cubes, syrups and flavouring for sauces.
Try a Nasturtium Petal Syrup.
Borage flowers, sometime called starflowers, have a mild flavour and striking purple coloured petals. They make excellent garnishes, ice cubes, smoothies and tempura.
Try a Beetroot, Borage and Chevre Salad.
Despite the no-doubt-by-design astonishment garnered by Sasha eating her red rose on the Bachelor recently, roses are in fact perfectly edible and nutritious. Again, the delicate flavours work well as garnishes, in salads or to flavour syrups or tea infusions.
Try a Rose Panna Cotta.
You’ll be familiar with the leaves for sure, but thyme blossom is also handy as a flavouring for soups, roast meats, sauces, drinks and splash-of-colour garnishes.
Try a Crostini.
Need more ideas?
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