I’m at a natural disadvantage with this cookbook – I live in Britain! While in the US, there are a variety of beautiful and easily available flowers, the weather in the UK makes it a bit more difficult to find any kind of nice flower – as a result, my options were limited. The book provides recipes for elderflowers, tulips, herb flowers – but due to my limited garden facilities, dandelions were the obvious choice (weeds, schmeeds….)
As I’ve come to expect from the lovely Quirk Books, it’s a cookbook which totally focuses on one thing – creative uses of flowers. I admit that my experience with flowers is rather limited: just some use of rosewater and maybe candied flowers as decoration. So I was pretty much the perfect audience for Cooking with Flowers – a complete flower novice!
The book is interesting not only as a cookbook, but discussing how herbs and flowers have been historically been used to flavour and decorate food. I found it really useful, and necessary to have some tips on safely using the flowers. It’s a wonderfully seasonal book – perfect for the gorgeous summer that we’re having! Would definitely recommend if you’re interested in expanding your use of flowers or going more natural in your food production.
Dandelion Cookies (from Cooking with Flowers)
113g (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
225g (1 cup) granulated sugar
2 tablespoons black treacle
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
156g (1 1/4 cup) plain flour
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1 1/3 cup oats
1 cup dandelion petals
Separating the dandelion petals from their stalks is probably the most difficult part and I’d recommend reading the book tips in order to do so safely (and deliciously), but you want to have about a cup of petals once you’ve prepped them.