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Top Pick Of The Week

June 28, 2011

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Edible Flowers

Canapés are just the beginning of beautiful recipes with edible flowers. Here, goat cheese and ricotta spread on a cucumber slice are garnished with chives and a borage blossom. Photo by Karma Pema | IST.

WHAT IT IS: Petals and whole blossoms from edible varieties of flowers.
WHY IT’S DIFFERENT: While edible flowers have likely been consumed since the dawn of mankind, they’ve never been a main stage ingredient in the U.S. It’s time to correct the oversight!
WHY WE LOVE IT: A single tiny blossom or a few petals make almost any dish more special. All you have to do is toss the flower onto the dish.
WHERE TO BUY IT: Check farmers markets and specialty food stores; our go-to online resource is Melissas.com.
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.Flower Power: Tasty, Edible Flowers For Easy, Elegant Recipes

 

CAPSULE REPORT: We get a surprising number of inquiries about edible flowers: specifically, where to buy them. If you want to entertain with panache, we can’t think of an easier way than using petals or tiny blossoms. They transform a perfectly nice dish into a memorable one.

You may have seen roses or other fresh flowers on wedding cakes, but cake decoration is just one of many uses for edible flowers. Use them in everything from cocktails, canapés and dips to main courses (including pasta and pilaf).

And of course, there are many desserts—from lavender ice cream, shortbread and pound cake to rose petal sorbet. Whether featuring flowers as an ingredient or a garnish, there are luscious flower recipes for every course.


Don’t run out to start stripping the garden just yet. As with mushrooms, only certain flower varieties are edible (about 40 different kinds in America), and they must be grown organically—no one should eat pesticides.

We’ve got lots of delicious details for you, including recipes. We begin with a history of edible flowers, which goes back several millennia in cultures worldwide. The flower garden was considered an extension of the vegetable garden, and enabled cooks to give vibrancy to foods and beverages.

Today, edible flowers are not just for fancy chefs and caterers. They’re for you, too! Let your creativity blossom.

Where Would You Like To Begin?

But first, take  a peek at the article index below.

By the way, flowers, as plants, have healthy nutrients in addition to their good looks. For example, roses, rose hips, dandelion blossoms and dandelion leaves are rich in vitamins A and C.

     
THE NIBBLE has been reviewing the finest foods in America since 2004.
Our recommendations are based purely on our opinion, after tasting thousands of products each year, that they represent the best in their respective categories. Product reviews are by a unanimous vote of our Editorial Committee. We do not accept placement fees: All products have earned their way into our webzine due to excellence.

Edible Flowers: Growing & Cooking

The Edible Flower Garden by Rosalind Creasy Edible Flowers by Kathy Brown Edible Flowers by Cathy Wilkinson Barash

The Edible Flower Garden, by Rosalind Creasy. You’ll learn what to plant in your garden, and then how to turn those flowers into gorgeous food. More information.

Edible Flowers, From Garden To Kitchen, by Kathy Brown. Another beautiful book that shows how easy it is to go from garden to plate. More information.

Edible Flowers: Desserts & Drinks, by Cathy Wilkinson Barash. Terrific tips and recipes that show off more than 30 different types of flowers. More information.

INDEX OF REVIEW

This is Page 1 of a five-page review. Click on the black links to visit related pages:

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