I loooove edible flowers.
As a kid, I used to pick honey-suckle with my neighbor Charlie. We'd giggle as the tiny pockets of sweet nectar popped open as we ate them.
Fast forward 25 years and I decided it was time to broaden my horizons with an another popular edible, nasturtiums. I tried 4 varieties this year; Apricot Twist, Empress of India, Jewel of Africa mix and Alaska mix.
Theses flowers and their leaves are peppery, a bit like a radish, so you don't want to use too many or they might take over the flavor of your dish.
Nasturtiums can also be used as a medicine and are packed with Vitamin C. I read somewhere though, that they may not be totally safe for little kids to eat, so if you've got little ones, maybe shy away from giving them a bowl of flowers to munch on.
Now for the recipes!
I didn't really have a plan for what I wanted to make, but I gathered my flowers, veggies, sour-dough, a baguette and a few types of spreads and started experimenting.
Here were my favorite combos of the batch:
Fancy Nasturtium Bruschetta
- fresh diced cherry tomatoes
- fresh basil, thinly sliced
- olive oil, sea salt, cracked pepper, dash of balsamic vinegar, diced clove of garlic (mix with ingredients above)
- top bread with the mixture, a few nasturtium and enjoy!
Smashed Avocado & Nasturtium Garlic Toast
- smash chunk of avocado onto olive oil garlic toast
- drizzle olive oil, balsamic vinegar, sea salt, cracked pepper
- top with nasturtium flowers
Spinach Artichoke, Veggie Nasturtium Toast
- buy or make spinach artichoke dip, spread thin layer over toast
- top with broccoli, cauliflower, peppers and nasturtium flowers & leaves
Here's a pro tip on flower picking:
- gather the flowers right before you're ready to serve the dish, if they're left out too long they will wilt
- if you can't avoid this, refrigerate the petals in a container until they're ready for use
- pick the petite nasturtium leaves, they have a milder flavor and are super cute!
- if you want to get fancy, try using the giant nasturtium leaves as plate decor, I ended up using one to hold dips and that was a hit!