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THE POWER OF // "A guide to edible flowers." //by Kelly Mason

Updated: Jun 28, 2020






When it comes to using edible flowers I have an obsession ! This hardcore obsession really kicked in during the summer of 2019 when I found myself back in the UK working as the head Chef in a Cheshire Plant based eatery...


It was here that I was able to really expore more fresh, living flowers combining them with my art of plating in each and every dish that I would create and serve!






Edible flowers and healing herbs have been used in cuisine for thousands and thousands of years and its a tradition still going as strong and beautiful as ever in new age and present day cuisine...







A plant based rose & cacao cake made in collaboration with Mason & Co chocolate , A "Fountin of youth" Anima Mundi Reish mushroom truffle & a homemade coconut & strawberry yogurt finished with Dried rose petals.







EDIBLE FLOWERS : A FEW THINGS TO KEEP IN MIND






* Not all the pretty flowers that you see are always edible.


In actual fact a number of these flowers can be poisonous so always ensure you know what you are using when allowing the petals to come in contact with foods... Do your research, expand your understanding and dont forget to enjoy this process of new discovery in the whole world that is edible flowers and plants.







* Some species of the same flower can be edible and others not.


Be careful and remember always know well the flower and the species of flower you are using.







* Avoid flowers that have been sprayed!


This includes insecticide, herbicide, or fungicides.








* Ideally, edible flowers are best eaten fresh.


Raw & freshly picked from your own garden where possible. However I must say that dried flowers bring their own charactor and feeling to a dish and in fact most of the time, as I travel alot, I always keep with me my "go to" dried rose, chamomile and corn flowers!






Plant based peanut butter fudges made for the Norway 2019 Akasha Yoga life retreat, Maple seared pear with dried chamomile flowers & my Oreo Mint cashew cheesecake made with Doterra peppermint oil and finished with sun dried rose petals...






Now to a simple guide to some of my top picks when it comes to edible flowers!


Some you can use to decorate and add a little more beauty to your final plated dish such as pansies and marigolds and others are an ingredient or the highlight flavour within the dish itself like lavender and rose...








Chamomile poached pears W orange cashew cream & Strawberry coconut rice pudding both finished with dried and fresh flowers by Delicatley edible for Akasha Yoga life and Blue spirulina peanut butter fudges...









EDIBLE FLOWERS








Chamomile

Amazing for a soothing and calming tea, It pairs really well with orange and cacao and I usualy decorate almost anything that has an orange flavor with dried chamomile flowers


Profile : Delicately floral, apple like & sightly sweet taste

Flavor Pairings ; Lemon; Orange; apples; white chocolate; Mango


Cornflower

A beautiful Blue petal that I usually use dried to finish dishes like my “Blue spirulina & Peppermint coconut latte” Or my homemade “Blue spirulina bounty cakes” or an alternatively bright superfood dish to really make the dish pop with fun and color!


Profile : Slightly spicy

Flavor Pairings ; Lemongrass; Spearmint; Mint


Citrus blossoms

It’s actually usually pretty hard for me to get my hands on citrus blossoms here where live but when I find myself in a spce that grow lemon or orange trees im in awe of the beauty of their sprouting blossoms!


Profile : A more subtle flavour bus very similar to the fruits that they came from like Lemon, orange, grapfruit and limes.

Flavor Pairings ; Sweet spices; Coconut; Walnuts; Pistachios; Honey

Daisy

They are so beautiful and you can make a nice gentle tes from the daisy petals.


Profile : A mild bitterness

Flavor Pairings ; Used mostly for decorative purpose for salads and to finish desserts


Dandelions

We never think of eating these “weeds” but they are such a good compliment to a darker toned main dish and are great as a tea.




Profile : sweet, the younger the sweeter

Flavor Pairings ; Garlic; onion; lemon; chili

Elderflower

I love elderflower, each and everytime I find myself in the UK I am dying to pick these flowers and creates teas, juice and to use them to decorate and add to desserts - it is one of my favorite flavors and smells.


Profile : Gentle floral & citrus notes and sweet vanilla taste.

Flavor Pairings ; Lemon; Vanilla; Orange; Pears


Hibiscus

Love! did you know that Hibiscus if you make in tea from cold is really great for high blood pressure conditions and having the tea hot is good for people with low blood pressure ?

I love the flavor of hibiscus! Its one of my the best!

These dont look great as a decirative flower once dried and is best used for its visual pleasure when still raw and fresh!


Profile : Tart slightly citrus. Amost cranberry like.

Flavor Pairings ; Ginger; berries; citrus; Honey

Jasmine

I think my all time favourite, one of the most intense and beautiful flavors and one of the most exciting pairings to include as a star flavor in a dish and it has has a strong affinity with desserts…Its an amazing tea both hot and iced!


Use only true jasmine as other species are not edible.


Profile : Sweet and floral

Flavor Pairings ; Coconut; Strawberry; Mild savory dishes


Lavender

Such a beautiful and powder flower with an amazing scent.

You can make lavender sugar and add it to sorbets, jams; decorate with dried sprinkles on ice cream, smoothies or desserts;


Profile : It has a sweet, floral flavor, with lemon and citrus tones with minty and rosemary-like aromas.

Flavor Pairings ; blueberry; strawberry; pears; honey; oranges; lemon; cacao

Marigolds

It’s labelled, the “Poor mans saffron” Only the bright orange petals on the marigold is edible and they are realy great to sprinkle on salads, soups and pasta dishes!


Profile : Spicy, Peppery

Flavor Pairings ; Used mostly for decorative purpose for main savory dishes - But can also be used on sweets to finish!

Mint

Love mint! An I love to grow my own whereever possible! It grows like wildfire and is suer easy to maintain...

Imagine this, each morning you go to your herb garden and you pick the fresh mint and create a completely homemade and homegrown lemon mint tea! Yum.


Profile : Sweet cool & refreshing

Flavor Pairings ; Cacao; Peas; Lemon

Pansy

Also known as Viola x Wittrockiana

There are so many way you can use these and similar edible flowers to decorate cakes; crystllise them, press them, sprinkle them, place then in ice cubes - the ist is endless and all give such a cute and beautiful finish to a summer drink or dessert!

Profile : a sweet grassy flavor ranging from very mild to tart

Flavor Pairings ; Used mostly for decorative purpose for salads and to finish desserts


Rose

I absolutley love to use rose within cuisine. I use in both form either dried of fresh! I love to create a homemade rose syrup or jam and decorate many of my desserts using dried rose petals - You can actually leave the dried rose in the sun to alter and soften their red into a beautiful champagne pink!

Profile : Sweet and spicy - overall the deeper the colour the stronger the flavour

Flavor Pairings ; Cacao; Rasberries; Pistachios; Lychee; Cardamon

Saffron

It creates a very distinctive golden tone to the dishes it is added to and the flavor ranes depending on the quality of the saffron.

I use as a tea, in rice dishes and to create a golden dye for my plant based art works …


Profile : Bitter / sweet depending on quality

Flavor Pairings ; Apples; Almonds; cinamon; white wine; rose wate; citrus fruits; honey

Decorativly it goes well to finish delicate desserts.

Viola

Very similar to pansis and the have a gentle sweet frsh flavor.

There are so many way you can use these and similar edible flowers to decorate cakes; crystllise them, press them, sprinkle them, place then in ice cubes - the ist is endless and all give such a cute and beautiful finish to a summer drink or dessert!


Only Viola cornuta, Viola hybrida, Viola tricolor, Viola x williamsiana,Viola x Wittrockiana (Pansy) and Viola odorata are edible


Profile : Sweet and sightly perfumed

Flavor Pairings ; Used mostly for decorative purpose for salads and to finish desserts

Violets

Such beautiful petals that I use from sweet desserts to savoury dishes. They come in a range of colours and shades and can be used to compliment te flavour of an already sweet dessert.


Profile : Sweet

Flavor Pairings ; Used mostly for decorative purpose for salads and to finish desserts



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