Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Edible flowers and there usage in food

“Flowers are sunshine, food and medicine of the soul”

The beauty and fragrance of flowers have always been appreciated and enjoyed by all; they have a soothing and calming effect on us. There vibrant colours and patterns bring in such joy that the soul is at peace. Food as they say is the way to a man’s heart and thus then flowers and food was combined the result was edible flowers.
The usage of edible flowers is not new in the kitchen, but it has gained popularity only recently. With the practice of delicate plating, what better than flowers to be used as garnishes. Using flowers in cooking is a practice that dates all the way back to the Roman Empire. It became widespread in the middle Ages and continued in popularity through the Victorian era. These days, many restaurant chefs are reviving this culinary art, using flower petals and blossoms to add both flavour and beauty to their menus.      


Not all flowers are edible and thus one has to be cautious when using them, never eat flowers from florists, nurseries, or garden centres, in many cases there flowers have been treated with pesticides that are not labelled as food crops. Always pick the flowers in the morning as their water content is at its highest. Remove the stamens and styles of the flowers before eating. The pollen can detract from the flavour; it may also cause an allergic reaction to some


Some flowers that are safe for consumption are:


Tuberous Begonias: The leaves, flowers, and stems are edible. Begonia blossoms have a citrus-sour taste. The petals are used in salads and as a garnish. Stems, also, can be used in place of rhubarb. The flowers and stems contain oxalic acid and should not be consumed by individuals suffering from gout, kidney stones, or rheumatism.

Wax Begonias:The fleshy leaves and flowers are edible raw or cooked.They can have slight bitter after taste and if in water most of the time,a hint of swamp in their flavour.


Calendula:Also called Marigolds,is a wonderful edible flower.Flavours range from spicy to bitter,tangy to peppery.Their sharp taste resembles saffron and has a pretty petal in golden-orange hues.These can be sprinkled on suops,pasta,rice dishes,herb butters,or salads and they add a yellow tint to them,and only the petals are edible.


Chrysanthemums:Tangy,slightly bitter.ranging in colors from red,white,yellow and orange.They range in taste from faint peppery to mild cauliflower.the petals should be blanced first and then scattered on a salad.The leaves can also be used to flavour vinegar.young leave and stems of Crown Daisy,also known as Chop Suey Greens or Shingiku in Japan,are widley used in oriental stir-fries and as salad seasoning.


Apple Blossoms:They have a delicate floral flavour and aroma.They are a nice accompaniment to fruit dishes and can easily be candied to use as a 

Candied flowers and petals can be used in a variety of imaginative ways; they can be used to decorate cakes, ice creams, sorbets, crèmes, fruit salads or even cocktails.


Edible flowers are one of the latest trends in the culinary world and are being widely used by chefs to enhance the aesthetic values on their plates.







By Shivangi Mathur

BCT&CA-Final year

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