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Edible Flowers from Herbs

Written by Karen on March 15th, 2019.      0 comments

 
Which Herbs Have Edible Flowers?

edible flower garnish

There are quite a few herb flowers that can be added to your range of edible flowers so lets have a look at which ones are safe to consume.  These flowers are wonderful as a colourful garnish or taste boost for both sweet and savoury food or great added to salads.  There are also many sweet dishes that use edible herb flowers.

Herb flowers tend to be a little more flavoursome than standard edible flowers such as viola, cornflower, etc so are best used sparingly.  The Herb flowers tend to have a milder taste than the foliage, as a rule.  Pick them early in the morning when they are at their best. 
(It goes without saying, avoid those that have been treated with pesticides.)

Your herbs may have attracted insects.  After picking them, leave them somewhere cool like your pantry to let the insects depart.  Placing them in a container on a paper towel helps to contain the insects so you can pop them back in the garden.  You can also give them a very light rinse just before use.


herbal tea

Add the edible flowers to your dishes just before serving to avoid wilting or discolouration.  If you're adding dressing to a salad, do so first and add the flowers at the end.  Dressings that contain acid (citrus juice or vinegar) will tend to discolour the petals.



HERBS with EDIBLE FLOWERS

chive flowers

CHIVES

A round pom-pom shaped lilac flower with subtle chive taste.

Garlic Chive flowers are also edible.  Try the chive flower petals in sauces, soups, potato & egg dishes.







basil flower




BASIL

The basil flower spike is creamy white and has a milder taste of basil than the leaves.

Use them in any dish to which you'd add basil or pesto and they look great added to tea.












Borage flower



BORAGE

A beautiful star-shaped purple/blue flower that tastes similar to honey.

The flower can be crystallised or used fresh.








sage flower


SAGE

Light purple or white flowers with a spicy note.  A mild version of the leaves.

Use them infused in tea, as a decoration on cakes or infused in vinegar.







Dandelion flower


DANDELION

Bright yellow multi-petalled flower with a bitter but not unpleasant taste.

It has many health properties including Vitamin A, Vitamin B12, antioxidants and the pollen, in particular, provides health benefits.









lavender flowers

LAVENDER

Purple cone shaped flower.  Being related to both mint and rosemary indicates the taste of the flowers.

Lavender has been making a comeback in the culinary world for a few years now.  You may have seen beautiful lavender shortbread, cakes, custards, ice-cream, cocktails, etc.








oregano flower


OREGANO

The white flowers have a more delicate flavour than the strongly flavoured leaves of the plants.

Oils infused with oregano flowers look and taste great.  Anything to do with oregano goes well on pizza.









Tarragon Texas


TARRAGON TEXAS
(Also known as Mexican Mint Marigold)

Small yellow flowers with flat petals that have a licorice flavour.

Unlike the French and Russian tarragon, the flowers of this variety are edible and add a great little surprise in a salad.










Hyssop flower





HYSSOP

Depending on the variety the flowers are mauve/blue, white and pink.

With a spicy taste (almost mint flavour) the flowers can be used as an alternative to lavender flowers.













coriander flower



CORIANDER

The flowers of coriander are white or pink umbels and tend to appear early in the summer.

Again, the flower is a milder taster than the foliage, with citrus/spicy notes.









winter savory flower


SUMMER SAVORY / WINTER SAVORY

Small white flowers that the bees love.

The flavour is great with beans, both green beans and dried beans.  Apparently Savory helps to minimise wind caused by eating beans.  The spicy flavour is perfect for casseroles, roasts and winter savory has a peppery flavour so is lovely added to salads as a garnish.






 
Use of herb flowers requires a bit of experiment as they tend to be quite potent in flavour.  It is advised to use them sparingly in your cooking, adding as you go to achieve the taste you want.  It is also important to source your herbal flowers from locations where there have been no sprays used.  This means avoiding flower shops or picking from the roadside.

However you decide to use them, enjoy the enhancement in flavour and colour herb flowers add to your food, drinks and preserves.

edible flower salad
 
 

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