02 03 Gallimaufry Grove: Edible Flowers: Easy Plate Appeal! 04 05 15 16 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 31 32 33

Edible Flowers: Easy Plate Appeal!

My lunch today.  Yum!
I added a broiled Herb and Lime Chicken Breast
leftover from last night's dinner.
I topped it all with a fabulous salad dressing and had a beautiful gourmet lunch.
Pampering for Mom!

It's finally Spring!!  It was 60F when I ran this morning -- absolutely fabulous.  The weather forecast says it's all going away tomorrow and the below freezing temperatures are going to return in time for my next run.  Who decides this stuff!?!  Would someone please fire all the local meteorologists and hire some spring-friendly ones?  This girl is tired of winter.  I'm ready for some warmth and sunshine.

Since the evil meteorologists are dooming my flowers to a frosty death, I decided to celebrate the warm, sunny spring day while it lasted.  How?  With edible flowers, of course!  What?  Wasn't that the first thing that came to your mind?  Okay, kites, bubbles and picnics probably came up first, but that's only because you hadn't read this post.

Edible flowers add serious impact to an otherwise boring meal.  The salad pictured above would be rather dull without the cha-zing of flowers.  A few days ago, May-May made scones and tea for a little tea party with Pickle Mickle.  She used a flower shaped cookie cutter to cut out the scones, then topped them with sugar and an edible Johnny-PopUp. (They are the pansy-like flowers on my salad.  Basically, they are just mini pansies.)  The result was stunning.  Her scones looked like something out of a gourmet foodie magazine.  I was too busy at the time to snap pictures, and have regretted it ever since.  Sigh.  My point, however, is that edible flowers take your meal up several notches.  They make the mundane into something really special.

While some flowers would probably send you on a trip to the doctor, others are perfectly tasty.  (Not all flowers are edible -- some are nasty, and others are poisonous.)  My salad today (pictured above) was lettuce greens topped with dandelion petals, redbuds and Johnny-PopUps.  It couldn't have been simpler to make.  Our Johnny-PopUps volunteer their cheery little heads every year in our patio garden.  We scattered a packet of heirloom seeds a few years ago and the rest is history.  The redbuds are from a redbud tree on our road.  I sent the kids outside to gather them for me, because that's what kids are for, right?  The dandelions are that yard pest (actually a very beneficial herb) that everyone tries so hard to get rid of.  These are the edible flowers currently available to me.  In the summer, we usually try to plant Lavender and Nasturtiums.  Nasturtiums are peppery, and add lots of color to your salad.  Smashing!  Just make sure you gather them in a place where you are absolutely sure there have been no pesticides or herbicides used.  This is critical for all your edible plants.  If you treat your lawn, don't gather your flowers there.  Either grow them in the garden, or head somewhere else.

If you are interested in adding some cha-zing to your life, here is a link to a chart showing the common and scientific names of many edible flowers.  It also tells what the flower will taste like, because you wouldn't want to pile a super spicy flower on your sweet, delicate wedding cake, now would you?  I probably would, just to see Aunt Maud's reaction when she chomped down.  And you can bet I'd have the camera rolling!

Enjoy your spring.  I hope yours lasts longer than one day!



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