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Different Edible Flowers: and what they are like

Alpine pinks (Dianthus) – a clove-like flavour ideal for adding to cakes as flavoured sugar, oils and vinegars
Bergamot (Monardia didyma) – a strong spicy scent, makes good tea and compliments bacon, poultry, rice and pasta
Chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum) – petals flavour and colour cream soups, fish chowder and egg dishes
Daisy (Bellis perennis) – not a strong flavour but petals make an interesting garnish for cakes and salads
Day lily (Hemerocallis) – add buds and flowers to stir fry, salads and soups. Crunchy with a peppery after taste but may have a laxative effect. Avoid buds damaged by gall midge
Elderflower (Sambucus nigra) – used to make wine and cordials, or place in a muslin bag to flavour tarts and jellies but removed before serving. Elderflowers can be dipped in batter and deep fried
Hibiscus (H. rosa-sinensis) – refreshing citrus-flavoured tea enhanced by rosemary
Hollyhock (Alcea rosea) – remove all traces of pollen and decorate cakes with crystallized petals
Lavender (Lavandula augustifolia) – flavoured sugar, honey or vinegar can be used to in cakes and biscuits while sprigs compliment roast pork, lamb and chicken
Nasturtium (Tropaeolum majus) – brightly-coloured, peppery flowers are good in salads and pasta dishes. The whole flower, leaves, and buds can be used or just the petals for a milder flavour
Pot marigold (Calendula officinalis) – intense colour and a peppery taste useful in soups, stews and puddings. Petals can be dried or pickled in vinegar or added to oil or butter
Primrose (Primula vulgaris) – decorate cakes with crystallized or fresh primrose or cowslip flowers. They can be frozen in ice cubes
Rose (Rosa) – all roses are edible with the more fragrant roses being the best. Petals can be crystallized, used to flavour drinks, sugar and even icing for summer cakes
Scented geraniums (Pelagonium) – flowers are milder than leaves and can be crystallized or frozen in ice cubes for summer cordials
Sunflower (Helianthus annuus) – blanch whole buds and serve with garlic butter. Petals can be used in salads or stir fries
Sweet violet (Viola odorata) – delicate flavour suitable for sweet or savoury dishes as well as tea. Use candy violets and pansies as a garnish on cakes and soufflés
Tiger lily (Lilium leucanthemum var. tigrinum) – delicate fragrance and flavour enhances salads, omelettes and poultry, plus can be used to stuff fish

Of course as always when picking things from the garden or foraging in the wild it is important to know what you are picking, not all flowers are edible and some can only be eaten in small amounts. It is also important to make sure that the flowers are free from pesticides and not picked from roadsides. Growing flowers to eat can be a great way to interest children in gardening and in getting them to try new and interesting tastes.

with: @binghames

Updated 20/03/2017 at 04:28


Which edible flowers are there and what are they like?

A question looking to get communal perspectives on the different edible flowers
Updated 20/03/2017 at 04:28