The thought of ingesting flowers might sound absolutely impossible, however, edible flowers are quite common, especially in the Mediterranean and Asian regions.
They are over 50 different types of edible flowers and here are five to try out:
While you might be familiar with basil leaves, a culinary herb belonging to the Lamiaceae family, its flowers are equally edible.
Basil flowers are famous for slowing down the growth of basil leaves and may have to be plucked. However, for an individual willing to try the flowers, sprinkling them in salads have been said to give off a similar flavour and taste to the leaves.
Other ways to enjoy basil flowers are by brewing basil tea, making basil flower oil and basil flower vinegar.
Of the over 150 species of rose flowers available, all are edible. And quite interestingly, these different species taste differently. Experts warn that you should stick to the rose petals for eating. Damask rose, white, pink and yellow roses make up the most tasteful of the flower’s species.
From serving as an ingredient for sponge cakes, to serving as ingredients for meals, and even major brew for teas, jam and beverages, rose flower has a long list of culinary functions.
Also, rose petals can be eaten raw, mixed with sugar or butter for a unique and unforgettable taste.
For centuries, chamomile has been used as a herb to soothe stress and anxiety, aid sleep and soothe the stomach.
Chamomile flowers are best used to make tea, as ingredients for making pastries, smoothies and even syrups.
Some experts argue that the German species of chamomile are the best and sweetest.
Although lavender is known for its distinct fragrance, the brightly-coloured flower is edible as well.
Lavender is a famous ingredient used for baked goods, syrups, liqueurs, sugars, oils, and herbal teas. Culinary experts warn advice that you should start out small when adding lavender to a dish as the fragrance can become overpowering.
Lavender’s fragrance is diverse as it pairs well with sweet and savoury ingredients like chocolate, lemon, etc.
Okra pods are a staple in a good number of regions worldwide. While Okra soup might be a favourite, the flowers are very much edible, both cooked and raw.
Okra flowers, when cooked, have been noted to yield nutty asparagus-like flavour.
These flowers also make a great addition in salads.
Other common edible flowers and precaution
There are a variety of other edible flowers namely; dandelions, honeysuckles, violets, zuchini blossoms, brocolli flowers, cauliflowers , sage, sunflowers, thyme, rosemary, etc.
It is advisable to know the source of the flowers intended for eating.
Experts say you should grow the flowers for eating as opposed to purchasing them from flower shops, as the latter may have been sprayed with pesticides or chemicals harmful to the health.