If the thought of chomping on a petal from an edible flower seems kinda weird to you, prepare to have your mind changed! Edible flower petals are a total game changer when they're coated in sugar (big surprise, right?).
First things first: find your flowers
You're going to eat these blooms, so you want to make sure they're safe to eat and haven't been treated with pesticides. The bad news? That likely means that florists and garden centers are out of the picture. Try the farmers' market or a specialty grocery store (your grocer might even special order flowers for you).
You can definitely grow your own flowers, too! But don't take a bite out of just anything in your garden — some of the prettiest blooms are poisonous.
So what flowers can you use? Here's the list:
- Squash blossom
- Citrus blossom
- Day Lily
How to make sweet-as-can-be candied flowers
What you need:
- Pasteurized egg whites
- Superfine sugar
- Small paint brush
- Parchment-lined cookie sheet
- Edible flowers and loose petals
Grab a whole flower or flower petal with tweezers, then use the paintbrush to coat each petal, front and back, with a thin layer of egg whites (pasteurized egg whites are safe to eat without cooking! Look for them at your grocery store, right alongside your regular eggs).
Place the coated flower into a bowl of superfine sugar. (Btw: Superfine sugar will give you delicate, subtly shimmering petals, but you can use regular granulated sugar if that's all you have.)
Use a spoon to sprinkle sugar over the surface of the flower. Pick up the flower with your tweezers and gently tap the tweezers against the rim of the bowl to knock off any excess sugar.
Let the flowers dry on a a parchment-lined cookie sheet for at least 12 hours (overnight is best). When they're firm to the touch, they're ready to eat!
Use your candied flowers right away, or store them in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three months. Store them flat, and place a sheet of parchment or waxed paper between layers to prevent them from breaking.