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08/08/2017

Summer on the plate

If before flowers were meant for decoration of restaurants then now they decorate the menus. Leading European restaurants have decided to treat their customers to new culinary delicacies and have started introducing fresh flowers into the dish content. According to the specialists flowers open up new opportunities in front of the contemporary culinary art which is searching unique and extraordinary flavors, colors and aromas. 

Heartsease

1.jpgThey have sweet, grass taste and are perfect for decoration of various dishes. The most popular delicacy is candied flowers of heartsease. They can be added into tea and they impart matchless aroma to it. Also these flowers are used to decorate cakes and salads. They look very original in jellies and are wonderfully harmonious with yogurts. They should be cut away in the period of abundant flowering or in the period of maturation of buds. They should be dried under shadow, sun and wind should be avoided, and the flowers should be periodically turned over for its equal drying out. The raw can be kept in a glass jar for 2 years. 

Cranesbill

2.jpgBitterish flavor and bright color of the flowers are ideal for salads, soups, also they are added into cocktails, and ice-cream, they can be used in refreshing drinks и cocktails, frozen in ice cubes or can be used to aromatize baked apples and pears. Fresh leaves can be added into salads or tea can be made out of them. Flowers, leaves and roots can be dried and kept in order to use as tea or as seasoning for strengthening the flavor. If you rub your skin with its fresh leaves you will be able to scare off mosquitoes and the plant itself protects your garden from rabbits. Leaves of cranesbill contain ether oil and in order assure yourself of it, it is enough to rub its leaves with fingers. The oil is discharged especially in the summer time under the sun, and this is the way this plant protects itself from overheat. 

Nasturtium

333333.jpgNasturtium is one of the most edible flowers, its flowers are bright and sweet, have flower aroma and flavor of spicy pepper. There is a big number of recipes of dishes made of this plant- salads, mashes, fillings, marinades, seasonings to meat, soups and solyankas. Chopped juvenile leaves can be dressed with sour cream or mayonnaise. Salads and fillings for biscuits are made of it and also it is used as an independent dish. It is a piquant seasoning for fish, meat and other dishes. In salads leaves of nasturtium are combined with potatoes, hard-boiled eggs, green peas, nettle, horse radish. The flowers are also used for sandwiches, are added to herbal salads, cold appetizers can be decorated with its flowers, also vinegar is extracted from its flowers, they are stuffed with various fillings, are frozen in ice cubes for drinks. 

Dandelion

44.jpgPetals of dandelion are perfect for cooking fish and meat dishes, are used for flavouring of honey, and preparation of liqueurs, also jams are made of dandelion flowers, they are added into teas against colds, and regulation of digestion. They can be eaten raw or cooked to remove the bitter taste. They are usually less bitter in the spring. Dandelion is rich with vitamins A and C, as well as B-carotene. Quite juvenile, tender leaves are used for salads, also it ameliorates metabolism and helps to keep in shape. And if anyone does not like bitterness of laticifer then it can be removed by infusing the leaves in salted water (30 minutes) , also it can be removed if you add lemon juice or vinegar into the salad. 

Tulip

5.jpgFlavor of these flowers perfectly complement flavor of meat and fish dishes, though most frequently buds of tulips are simply used as holding capacity for some kind of filling, for example, for chicken or egg salads. There are specific rules for preparation of tulips to eat. For example if you use leaves in salads they should be preliminarily drenched for an hour by adding a spoon of vinegar as it removes bitterness. The green parts of the flower can be added into okroshka. If you fill them up with rye beer (kvass) and do not serve it immediately but leave it for 2-3 hours then you can skip adding vinegar. For dishes naturally grown tulips should be used. Flowers obtained from shops or markets are not suitable for it. Petals should be tasted to know the flavor and the flavor depends on the soil and of course also on the sort. There are such restaurants in the world the zest of the menu of which is the dish made of braised tulips – from petals and juvenile buds. They are very tender and their flavor is similar to that of broccoli and asparagus. There is also a unique dessert –candied petals of tulips with mousse or cream. 

Margaritka

6.jpgMargaritka is used in culinary for cooking several dishes. The flowers have rather pleasant nutty flavor which enables to combine the plant with many sweet dishes. Margaritka is added as a seasoning in sandwiches and soups. They are well combined with pasta, rice and other dishes and its flowers are perfect for filling of cheese cream and butter. 

However, do not forget that all these plants can be both harmful and useful.

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