Eating Edible Flowers

After a family member’s recent stay in the hospital, you find yourself with a whole houseful of flowers. You’ve heard of using flowers to decorate dishes or for use in recipes. However, before you go plucking the petals off the flowers in those arrangements, there are a few things that you need to know.

Flowers that are said to be edible are only edible if they are either grown organically or treated with organic pesticides like those used on fruits or vegetables.
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Flowers that are from florists, nurseries or garden centers are grown for decoration only. They’re usually chemically treated either by fertilizers or pesticides. They aren’t safe to be eaten unless you know for certain that they’ve been maintained organically. Do not eat flowers growing on the side of the road! The chemicals used to maintain roadside conditions are deadly and the emissions from cars contaminate the flowers growing there. Your safest method is to grow the flowers yourself, so that you know with a complete certainty what’s gone into growing the flowers.

Although a flower may be edible, it may not be palatable to some people’s tastes. What might taste good to you may not taste even slightly appealing to someone close to you. Also keep individual allergies in mind before testing out a recipe. A little consideration goes a long, long way and could save you a trip to the hospital.

Before cooking with or eating edible flowers, remember to only eat the petals. The pistils and stamens of a flower should not be consumed. Until you’ve tested the effects of a single flower, it’s best not to ingest large quantities of any blossom, no matter how safe it may seem at the time.

Some of the most common flowers said to be edible are apple blossoms, carnations, chrysanthemums, dandelions, geraniums, marigolds, honeysuckle,pansies, tulips – even lillies and roses! There are so many more edible flowers out there, and recipes are available all over the internet. There are also cookbooks devoted solely to using these beautiful blooms.

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