Summer! It is here and we couldn't be more pleased to see all the blooms out and getting to spend time outdoors. It got us thinking about garden parties and all the flowers that you can add to the menu.
There are lots of edible flowers that can add flavour as well as colour to your dishes. Some can be bought ready from the supermarket shelves and others you can find in the garden. It is important of course to know what is safe to eat and when in doubt - don't eat.
Here are a few of the team's favourite flowers to add to recipes, sweet and savory alike...
Borage Borago Officinalis
Borage is a herb that grows easily in the garden in full sun or part shade. It's flowers are a beautiful blue star shapes. It can seed itself and reappear each year bringing more flowers with it. Flowering in June and July just in time to add the flowers to your Pimm's and Lemonade (or indeed any cocktail of your choice) for an extra pop of colour. The blooms often even turn from blue to pink as you drink!
(Image via Jardin Perdu)
Dandelion Taraxacum Officinale
Dandelions are not hard to spot over the warmer months and flower from spring right through summer, bringing yellow splashes to gardens and fields everywhere. They can be picked and used to make bright, refreshing Dandelion wine. With a floral and citrus taste it is a refreshing summery drink, once you've left it to sit for a few months (save it for the following year if you're patient...)
Find a recipe and tips here to make your own glass of sunshine!
(Image via Klaudyna Hebda)
Nasturtium Tropaeolum Majus
Nasturium flowers are beautiful, easy to grow and tasty as well - what's not to like? They flower from summer through to autumn, with blooms in bright yellow, oranges and rich red.
They are great in salads, sauces, pestos and soups, adding a strong peppery taste. We think they are particularly wonderful in fresh summer rolls, adding colour and flavour to these tasty snacks. You can use the leaves as well, which have a milder peppery flavour.
Get a recipe and growing tips here
(Image via hgtv)
Courgette Flowers Cucurbita pepo
Courgette (or Zucchini) flowers are a beautiful yellow orange bloom that appear en masse during courgette season (June to Oct - UK) There are both female and male flowers on the plant and both are edible. They are delicious cooked - especially stuffed with a soft cheese such as ricotta. They can be baked, deep fried or cooked into pasta and rice dishes on the hob.
You can find a recipe for stuffed deep-fried courgette flowers here
(Image via The Telegraph Photo: YUKI SUGIURA)
Chive Flowers Allium schoenoprasum
Chives are really easy to grow and widely used in dishes for their mild onion-like flavour. The flowers also have this lovely taste and work well as an ingredient for home flavoured vinegar. The blossoms add an extra flavour and beautiful colour to wine vinegar, plus this is a very quick cook - Then you just have to wait until the flavours have all seeped into the mix and begin using in salad dressings and summer cooking!
Find an easy tasty recipe here
Image via Leite's Culinaria
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