Monday, 19 November 2012

Making It Pretty - Edible Flowers

You may have noticed that pretty little flowers are making it big on restaurant plates - whether you're eating chive flowers at Attica or Nicolas Poelaert's scattering white lilac and sheep sorrel blossom across your food at Brooks.

But the lovely truth is that you can add these to your dishes at home - it takes practically no effort (apart from the shopping) and the touch is truly spectacular, offering both visual and taste appeal.

Now, the best way to use edible flowers is to grow and pick them yourselves but very few do so. Also, most flowers are not for eating and some are DEADLY. Like deadly deadly. Do not, repeat, DO NOT EAT POISONOUS FLOWERS. Put yourself in the hands of an expert and pop down to the Market.

Damian Pike has a lovely range of cornflowers and borage flowers at the moment. The cornflowers are simply stunning. Stunning. Damian recommends using them with a crème brûlée or other custard based dessert. Other flowers, such as carnations, have an almost peppery taste and are more suitable to offset a savoury course.

Another flower you'd be used to seeing is the zucchini flower. Arriving into the Market in abundance now, these little pieces of Spring are a delight to stuff with goat curd or ricotta, herbed with a little bit of chive or mixed with chicken mince. They are delicate, both in structure and flavour, so you don't want to overwhelm them.

The male flowers are significantly cheaper (they come without the baby zucchini) but if you remove the stem they can still be stuffed or wilted and mixed through risotto or pasta. Pick some of these lovelies up at F & J Fruiterers or Reliable Fruit and Vegies.  And save a couple to garnish the top of the dish. 

Some would argue that flowers on food is simply trendy. And we would say that it's simply beautiful. And delicious. So there.


  1. I LOVE the idea of eating flowers. Trendy smendy I say....

    1. Exactly. (Also, first blog comment! Hurray hurray!)