Edible flowers add an undeniable cachet to fine dining. And they’re not only for decoration; their subtle bouquet also enhances and complements a variety of flavours, adding freshness and fun to your summer cuisine. Fresh, dried, raw or cooked, flowers can be served in a variety of useful ways: as a garnish, side vegetable, salad or in a dessert. They’re also ideal for infusing vinegars, oils, syrups and teas. The only drawback? Anyone with pollen allergies is advised to avoid these tasty morsels.
Here are 14 blooms you can grow in your own garden to use for summer meals.
1. Nasturtium (Tropaeolum majus cvs.)
Annual; flowers best in average to poor garden soil; requires fresh, well-drained soil
Grows to be: 2 m high, 45 cm wide
Use: Fresh (salads); preserved buds (vinegars)
2. Zucchini (Cucurbita pepo cvs.)
Annual; requires rich, well-drained soil
Grows to be: 60 cm high, 90 cm wide
Use: Fresh (salads); cooked (soups, tempura, stuffings)