Edible flowers are a great way to add another note to your dish. They can be used as a garnish (Nasturtiums with chicken), an addition to salad (rosemary and arugula), added to a beverage (hibiscus and citrus can be added to lemonade), vinaigrettes (thyme, sage, and dill), tea (lemon verbena and jasmine) or crystalized and placed on cakes (pansies and roses).
A few things to keep in mind. First, don’t spray any chemicals on plants you intend to eat. Pesticides are linked to digestive disorders, and who wants that. Second, make sure you buy your plants from a reputable nursery. Some plants look similar to poisonous plants, and you don’t want to eat any of those. Lastly, don’t over do it with the flowers. Some flowers may be edible, but can be harmful if consumed in large quantities.
Nasturtium flowers, sweet, pungent and peppery
Lemon Verbena Flowers, good in tea
Hibiscus Flowers, great companion in lemonade
Gardenia flowers, light and sweet
Squash Blossoms, great for stuffing
Pansy flowers, sweet and tart
Lemon Citrus flowers
For additional information on other edible flowers visit What’s Cooking America