by Taetske | 11:47 am
(Last Updated On: February 4, 2021)

 

Have you heard about edible flowers?

 

I have to tell you the truth I knew little about this subject. Therefore, I was happy to come across an article which talked about edible flowers.

 

Dandelion

Dandelion image Silviarita

 

In the south of Spain, in the province of Malaga is a region called Axarquia which includes 31 municipalities. The name might be traced back to Arabic or Greek origins. It has beautiful nature, hills, and mountains and has remained unspoiled by urban growth or the influx of too many foreign interests.

The region has a subtropical climate, so besides avocados, you might also find mango and kiwis being grown here. Should you come to visit, try the sweet wine made from sun-dried grapes. In Competa, you can visit a Museo de Vino where you can taste the local wine.

 

A special book

Do you love wine? If yes, then this book is for you. It is the brand-new second edition and the only up-to-date illustrated reference to Spanish wines. Every evening I have at least 1 glass of good Spanish house wine and I must confess I love it.

You will read about Spanish wines in detail. Over 150 color photographs and a great map where you will find all the wine regions.

 

 

2 Beautiful Parks

This region is very well known for many things. In 1487 Castilian troops conquered it, after the battle of Axarquia when the castles of Zalia, Alcausin, Bentomiz, and Arenas fell. Because Muslim rulers had controlled the region since 700 AD, most of the villages are of Muslim origin and the irrigation channels that you see throughout the area date back to those times.

There are two famous parks in this region; Parque Natural de las Sierras de Tejada, Almijara, and Alhama, and the Paraje natural de Los Acantilados de Maro-Cerro Gordo.

 

A special place in the south of Spain

We well know the Axarquia for its beautiful landscape, agriculture produce, which is abundant thanks to its sub-tropical climate, the yearly Fiestas, handicraft, and good food. You will find ceramics which serve as pretty souvenirs and restaurants that serve good local fare. Now, something special has been added to this list, edible flowers.

 

Borage Plant

Borage Plant image Monika Baechler

 

We have used edible flowers in Asian, European, and Middle Eastern cuisines. Candied flowers like little violets are used to decorate cakes. I remember when I was a small girl I liked to eat them. We can mix them into salads and added to beverages like wines and teas.

You will also find flowers in vinegar, marinades, and dressings. Quite a few of them seem to hold benefits for our health, so it is well worth looking into this.

 

Lovely violets

Lovely violets image AnnaER

 

Some flowers have a high nutritional value, like the dandelion. They contain high doses of polyphenols and antioxidants, plus they have anti-inflammatory and anti-angiogenic properties. When eating flowers, one should always have freshly cut ones and not eat unopened buds or wilted flowers.

 

How to grow lovely and fragrant flowers

I bet when you have this book it will inspire you to plant and grow your own flowers. Did you know there are at least 40 varieties of edible flowers? You will find instructions on how to grow and harvest each variety.

Plus some delicious recipes like Flower Butters, Candied Flowers, Rose Petal Syrup and much more. Oh, lets not forget Lavender Ice Cream, yummy.

 

 

In past times, they used flowers in the kitchen in Ancient Greece, Rome, and also Egypt. The first recorded mention of edible flower use was in 140 BC. In Japan and China, they add the petals of the Chrysanthemum to soups and teas. Italian and Hispanic cultures stuff the blossoms of squash then cook the stuffed flower. Here comes a yummy recipe.

 

Do you want to grow your own edible flowers?

If you should get interested in using edible flowers yourself, perhaps the best way would be to grow it in your own garden. Needless to say, you need a green garden where all kinds of herbicides and pesticides are forbidden.

The pretty flowers you might see along the road are not good because they have suffered pollution made by the passing cars. The flowers you buy in a shop are no good either, because of the likely hood that someone has sprayed them with pesticides.

 

Wild Flowers growing in the meadow

Wild Flowers growing in the meadow image Capri23auto

 

Well, you can see there are multiple uses of edible flowers and 2 young Germans, living in the south of Spain, saw the potential of marketing edible flowers. Peter Knacke is the manager and Til Runge is the head of the production.

Together they have a company by the name Sabor y Salud, which means Taste and Health. In 2017, they moved to new premises on the boundary between Velez and Benamocarra.

 

Basil plants growing in greenhouse

Basil plants growing in greenhouse image thetravelnook

 

The new premises of Sabor y Salud

The area they use to cultivate edible flower, herbs, and salad leaves is in greenhouses with a total area of 12.000 square meters. Recently the company has got its certification as an ecological producer.

With a view to the European market, being certified as an ecological producer (certified organic) is important as people, in general, have become more conscious about the value of organic foods. They grow here some 200 different varieties of flowers, and that makes about 1 million flowers a year.

Spain is, up till now, their primary market, but about 10% of the harvest is exported to France. Talks are being held with a wholesaler in Holland, so there is a possibility to expand the market. There is a potential of a 40% increase in production and sales soon.

 

Female Chef in the kitchen

Female Chef in the kitchen image Marcella Villegas

 

Spain’s world-famous chefs

Some of Spain’s greatest chefs are already a client of Sabor y Salud. The list includes the Roca brothers, and Juan Mari Arzak, who, in his restaurant, has a wine cellar with 100.000 bottles. Others include Pedro Subijana, Dani Carcia, Jose Carlos Garcia, Kisko Garcia, Carme Ruscallada, and Ferran Adria.

Besides selling their products, Sabor y Salud also provides information on how to use edible flowers in your kitchen. They grow not only the product but also highlight the different colors, flavors, and even health aspects. Edible flowers should not only have a decorative function, but it should also be an integral part of the dish you are making.

If you are interested, you can take part in courses and workshops to find out how to best use edible flowers.

Have a look at the following YouTube video. I am sure it is worth your time.

 

 

Conclusion

Something which has been known and used for nearly 2000 years is having a comeback in our modern life. Nature, as usual, delights us with the use of her gifts. Do you plan to introduce edible flowers into your diet? Here is a list of 42 edible flowers which you can check. I would love to hear if you do, so please leave a comment.

I have made a special page for you. It holds a collection of things you might find interesting. Please, before you leave visit Recommendations.

 

Source: Newspaper Sur, article by Augustin Pelaez in March 2010. Wikipedia.

Photo Source: Pixabay

 

There are many beautiful places you can visit in Spain. You might like to read the following post.

15 Beautiful and Unique National Parks in Spain

Comments

Daniel

Hi Taetske, I must say that this article is very helpful and informative. I heard some stories about edible flowers for health but I did not know about these benefits. I will certainly try to follow your guide for raising edible flowers, I am sure that my wife will be very happy to read this.

Mar 28.2019 | 05:58 pm

    Taetske

    Good evening Daniel,

    Nice to see you again. Thank you for your comment.

    On my organic farm, I have some of the flowers growing. I will try with a few and see how they taste. I find this also interesting and will investigate some more.

    Regards, Taetske

    Mar 28.2019 | 07:42 pm

Lee

Very interesting article. I have lots of vegetables, fruits, and salads in my diet, but I don’t think I have ever eaten a flower nor have I ever considered it. When I first started reading your post I din’t think much about it, but the more I think about it sounds strange yet very beneficial if there is significant nutritional value. I will be on the look out for more information on this in the future since I am always looking for alternatives to the things I eat. 

Mar 28.2019 | 05:59 pm

    Taetske

    Good evening Lee,

    Nature offers many edible things but most have been forgotten. We have turned away from nature and started to make man-made foods which did not improve our health. I would certainly try to get more information on this and then perhaps grow some flowers yourself. 

    Thank you for your comment. I hope you downloaded your free PDF?

    Regards, Taetske

    Mar 28.2019 | 07:30 pm

Juliet

Hi T,

The only edible flower I heard about before reading your post is the hibiscus flower. It comes in two colours, red and green. The red is made into herbal tea and the green makes lovely stews. These edible flowers from Spain sound really interesting and there are many of them too. I would love to experiment with them. I particularly like the violets. 

Mar 28.2019 | 06:34 pm

    Taetske

    Good evening Juliet,

    I will also experiment some with adding flowers to my diet. I am always open to trying new things in my life.

    Thank you for your comment on my website. I hope you downloaded your free PDF?

    Regards, Taetske

    Mar 28.2019 | 07:14 pm

Irin Khan

Hello,

Excellent Article! There is a plethora of information about Edible Flowers. It’s really surprising. Edible flowers do not only enhance the beauty of the garden but make our mind beautiful. A beautiful mind is the foundation of beautiful health. By eating some useful flowers, our body’s nutritional needs can be satisfied. For example, Violet flower contains polyphenols and antioxidants which is beneficial for good health. I have been able to get to know the flower shots of many flowers in this post by your writing.

Mar 28.2019 | 06:51 pm

    Taetske

    Good evening Irin,

    Thank you for visiting my website and leaving a comment. I hope you downloaded your free PDF?

    Nice that you liked my post on edible flowers. Nature is amazing and the more investigations are done the more beneficial things for our health are discovered. I certainly will try it in my own garden.

    Regards, Taetske

    Mar 28.2019 | 07:11 pm

STACI Kreegher

Wow that was so informative. I knew of some edible flowers, but didnt realise there were many more.
Loved it

Jun 03.2019 | 06:17 am

    Taetske

    Good Morning Stacy,

    Thank you for the visit to my website and leaving a comment. I hope you downloaded your free PDF?
    There is quite a bunch of edible flowers, let’s face it, nature is amazing. The more food sources are rediscovered the better as there will be many more mouths to feed in the near future.

    Regards, Taetske

    Jun 03.2019 | 10:46 am

Louise

I really enjoyed reading this. Here in the UK we use a lot of edible flowers. We also grow them as partner plants with vegetables as they attract many insects and pest away from the vegetable crops.I have recently written a blog which included planting edibles in hanging baskets, edible flowers such as pansies and nasturtiums along side tomatoes, strawberries etc. They look colourful and appetising. I love chive flowers too.  

Very interesting to read about them from Spain

Jun 03.2019 | 06:36 am

    Taetske

    Good Morning Louise,

    Thank you for your visit and leaving a comment. I hope you downloaded your free PDF?

    How nice that you are also interested in growing your own vegetables. We have quite a big vegetable garden where Michael, who emigrated from the U.S. to Spain in August 2016, is experimenting. He has to get used to the climate, soil, etc. 

    We do not have real winters anymore, during day time around 20C only very few days were colder. At night minimum 6C. As the farm is organic he tried to get the snails drunk on beer, not a real success but the chickens love them.

    Regards, Taetske

    Jun 03.2019 | 09:16 am

RoDarrick

Very informative post. I love vegetarian meals and I have trued various fruits, vegetables and plants but never tried taking a flower. Though I had heard about an edible flower, hibiscus, but I never thought of trying it out. But while reading through this post, as bizarre as it sounded to me, I started to align with the benefits associated with the intake of edible flowers because it seems to be very nutritious. 

Jun 03.2019 | 06:38 am

    Taetske

    Good Morning Darrick,

    Nice to see you again. Thank you for your comment.

    Did you find this bizarre? I can do better than this. You should have read my recent post on my healthy anti-aging alternative website. Because of depleted world resources we have to think about eating new things like insects, something very normal in a lot of countries but not in Western countries. Some people might find that a creepy post.

    Regards, Taetske

    Jun 03.2019 | 09:23 am

Mike Viray

It’s really interesting that we are slowly rediscovering ways of making food out of sustainable resources such as plants, vegetables, and as you pointed out, flowers. To be honest though, I’ve never really thought about using flowers as food, unlike your usual staples like fruits and vegetables. This is all pretty new information to me!

That said, it is nice to see more sources of food that are also sustainable, what with the world now on the brink of exhausting its resources.

Jun 03.2019 | 06:38 am

    Taetske

    Good Morning Mike,

    Thank you for your comment. I hope you downloaded your free PDF?

    That was the right word to use. Rediscover. The modern human rediscovers many things Mother Nature has to offer. These things were used by past cultures and still used by people who live close to nature. Be it for medicine or for food actually nature provides for most of these needs.

    I have never understood why humans always want to improve on nature. What we produce is in most cases only a dim reflection. 

    Regards, Taetske

    Jun 03.2019 | 09:28 am

Chandrashekhar

I liked this article about edible flowers. This is because I & my wife are over 50 years of age now. We have shifted our diet on natural eating over traditional eating nowadays. You have provided good information about edible flowers. The list of 42 flowers you had provided is a treasure for us. I am going to explore the name mentioned as I do not know how many of them are readily available here in India. I had come to the conclusion that eating such food is really important after a certain age which keeps you fit. Thanks, For your article & new information to search on.

Jun 03.2019 | 06:55 am

    Taetske

    Good Morning Chandrashekhar,

    Nice to hear you found my article helpful. Nature is amazing and provides for most of our need. We should take better care of the environment as it is our habitat and provider.

    It is since 1986 that I have gone through my own personal food evolution. I am very happy with my health at 69, it is a lot better than 40 years ago. I even increased my bone density. I had no idea that was possible at my age. I think I have found the right balance for myself. Eat as close to nature as possible.

    Thank you for your comment. I hope you downloaded your free PDF?

    Regards, Taetske

    Jun 03.2019 | 09:34 am

Marios Tofarides

Hey there,

I wasn’t aware of any edible flowers, especially in the south of Spain. The area’s name must be of Arabic origin because the Arabs conquered part of the peninsula after the Greeks. Thanks for letting us know about these flowers, and I will have them in mind for the future. 

Thanks again!

Marios

Jun 03.2019 | 11:33 am

    Taetske

    Good afternoon Marios,

    Personally, I am very happy to be living in Spain. I find it to be a lovely country.

    As Earth resources are getting depleted it is good to find out about new food sources. A flower will not fill your stomach of course but it will add color and a little extra health to your dish.

    Thank you for your comment. I hope you downloaded your free PDF?

    Regards, Taetske

    Jun 03.2019 | 12:49 pm

Chuck Adkins

Hi there, Great interesting article. I have eaten a few flowers such as a flower from a squash, but nothing such as you mention. I feel that anything that is naturally grown is good for your health. I love natural foods you can really taste the flavors. Thank you for enlightening me to a new world of flowers

Feb 04.2021 | 06:01 pm

    Taetske

    Good Morning Chuck,

    It is nice to read you have discovered a new world. Flowers are a gift of Mother Nature, not only the beauty they hold, but they are good for your health as well. Here on my organic farm, I enjoy many types of wildflowers like the Borage.

    Thank you for your visit and for your comment. I hope you downloaded the free PDF? Tulip widget.

    Regards, Taetske

    Feb 05.2021 | 07:31 am

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