Learn tips and techniques for using edible flowers for entertaining, including what to look for and how to display beautiful flowers at your next gathering.
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Using edible flowers when entertaining adds color and interest to your presentation, and I think it also adds an extra "something" that you don’t see every day. The taste of most flowers is very mild, but their beauty makes everything extra special.
Don’t use flowers with pesticides or other chemicals.
Use flowers you’ve grown, or ask at the nursery if they spray their flowers.
Be careful with those who are sensitive to pollen or who have asthma, as the flowers may cause an allergic reaction.
Check a reference guide to help you correctly identify your flowers and to make sure they are safe. Sometimes you should only eat the petals, as other parts are bitter or even toxic. Check out this handy list from the University of Minnesota's Extension Unit.
Using Edible Flowers
If you can, pick the flowers in the morning. Rinse them gently with water and place in a plastic bag with a damp paper towel. Then place the bag in the refrigerator until you are ready to use them.
Two very easy ways to add flowers are: in your salad, and as a garnish for other items like the ever-popular cupcake.
Other uses for edible flowers
Freeze them in ice cubes, or make an ice ring for a punch.
Make flower butter blending it with softened butter. Then roll it into a log, wrap with plastic wrap, and refrigerate.
Make candied flowers by brushing egg whites over each petal, then dusting with super-fine sugar.
Make floral scented sugar with rose petals or lavender.
Floral vinegar made with white wine and flowers like lavender or red nasturium will turn a beautiful shade of pink.
If you don’t have enough of your own, you can always purchase them online.
They say that many of us eat with our eyes, so what better way to offer a feast for the eyes, than using edible flowers.