There is no dearth of options when it comes to dressing up dishes and drinks – sauces, dips & spreads. However, there is one more type of garnish that looks prettier and tastes even better. Yes, we are talking about flowers. Other than beautifying and sprucing your space, flowers are a great addition to several food and beverages. For ages, they have been used to enhance the look as well as the flavour of any dish. Besides, they can even add interesting and amazing textures and flavours. So, without any further ado, bring the goodness of nature straight to your plate with these edible flowers.
While talking about the edible flowers, can a rose be left behind! From anything sweet to spicy, roses (or Gulab) can complement any dish. You can toss its petals into a salad, prepare rose water, flavour sweet dishes and other desserts. Other than adding flavours and a pop of red colour to your food, roses are also believed to have anti-inflammatory properties. Therefore, drinking rose water/beverages can be good for sore throat, skin irritation, relieving headaches and more. Up your culinary cred with roses!
These cute little flowers are as pleasing to the palate as they are to the eye. Rich in beneficial antioxidants, violets can be sprinkled in soups, salads, smoothies and cocktails. You can also use them to brew tea, make syrup and flavour/decorate desserts such as cake, rice pudding and popsicles. So if your dish is looking bland, you can fancy it up with eye-catching violets. Though most varieties of violets are edible, you might want to stay away from African violets, yellow violets and lesser celandine.
Also known as Crocus sativus and Kesar, the Saffron Flower is a beautiful flower that offers amazing taste, colour and looks to dishes. The flower gives one of the most expensive spices in the world and is primarily used in colouring the rice in biryani, giving flavour to desserts, teas and sauces.
Hibiscus flower has a mix of sweet and tangy flavours that makes it a popular choice for edible flowers. It is often utilised as a salad garnish and as brewing tea. Since the flower is known to have anthocyanins and certain antioxidants, drinking its tea is proven to lower blood pressure & cholesterol levels and improve liver health. You can also add the flower to yoghurt or oatmeal for enhancing fun and flavour.
Bold and beautiful, Nasturtium is a stunning annual that is known to be a must-have in the kitchen gardens. Both its leaves and petals are packed with nutrition, full of flavours and perfect to add a peppery punch to salads, pesto and cocktails. The flower contains high amounts of iron, flavonoids, manganese and beta carotene. So, add flower power to your diet with Nasturtium.
Apart from spreading a soothing scent and being an effective essential oil, this light purple flower not only improves your mental health but also makes a delicious addition to your plate. Add chopped-up lavender to flavour ice creams, yoghurts, scones, puddings, syrup and teas. It also makes a yummy seasoning for curries and vegetables.
Spruce up your tea and other drinks with Chamomile. Packed with anti-carcinogenic, anti-inflammatory and wound-healing properties, the Chamomile flower has a unique herbal flavour and is widely utilised to soothe the mind and fight anxiety. In fact, it is also used for medicinal purposes.
Well, that’s all folks! The aforementioned edible flowers are more than just eye candy. They are perfect to use as an ingredient in a recipe, simply garnish or enliven a dish. You can order these plants online or even grow them easily in your garden.