Are Pansies Edible?
Pansies are one of the most popular flower in the garden. They are not only beautiful but they have many health benefits too. You may think that eating them would be good for your body, but it’s not necessarily true! There are some things you need to consider before trying out these delicious flowers.
Flowers can cause allergies if eaten raw or undercooked. If you’re allergic to any of the following, then don’t try out these flowers:
There are several types of plants that contain allergenic proteins. Some of them include: peanuts, tree nuts (walnuts, almonds), fish (salmon) and shellfish (clams).
Allergic reactions occur when these foods contact certain parts of the immune system. These allergens can cause symptoms such as hives, swelling and difficulty breathing. Other symptoms may include itching, rash, vomiting and diarrhea.
The pollen from these plants can cause asthma attacks in children. It is possible that the pollen from these flowers could trigger anaphylactic shock in someone with a peanut allergy.
However, there are other factors that play into whether or not you’ll experience an allergic reaction to flowers. For example, the pollen content of the flowers varies greatly depending on their geographic location and even season. In addition, even if you are allergic to a flower’s pollen you may be able to touch or smell the flower without any adverse effects.
Can you eat pansies?
Many gardeners will tell you not to eat any flowers from your yard because they think they’re all poisonous. This is definitely not true! There are many varieties of edible flowers and they can add a nice pop of color to many dishes. Many flowers have a slightly bitter taste, but this can be combated by using sugar or another sweetener when cooking with them. There are also some flowers that have a bland taste like violets, so they’re often mixed in with other varieties.
Edible flowers can be used in all sorts of dishes from appetizers to main courses and even desserts. They can be used to garnish dishes and can even be turned into wine or honey!
Pansies are definitely edible! They have a slightly bitter taste, but this can be combated by mixing them with sweeter flowers or adding sugar after cooking them.
The best way to cook pansies is to put them in a salad or use them as a garnish on top of your dish. You can also make a nice violet syrup with the flowers and use it in desserts. Just be sure you don’t eat too many pansies since they may cause nausea if you do.
Pansy Flower Syrup Recipe
2 cups of water
1 cup of sugar
1 cup of chopped pansies
Put the chopped pansies in a pan and cover them with water. Bring the water to a boil and then allow it to simmer for about 15-20 minutes.
Let the mixture cool and then strain out the flowers. Mix in 1 cup of sugar for every cup of liquid. Put the mixture back on the stove and simmer for about 15 minutes. Put the mixture in a jar and refrigerate it for at least 6 hours. Serve on ice cream or in a cocktail.
Pansy Flower Ice Cream
1 pint of your favorite ice cream
1 cup of pansies
2 tbsp honey
Put the honey in a pan and heat it until it melts. Add the pansies and mix until they’re completely coated in the honey.
Put a scoop of ice cream in a bowl and top it with the pansy mixture. Serve immediately.
The Importance of Eating Flowers
Eating flowers has been a long-standing practice in many cultures around the world. Although some people may not consider this a common food, there are many varieties that can be used as edible decorations for food.
Edible flowers can add an interesting flavor to many dishes and can even be used to make wine or honey. Eating flowers is also a great way to support biodiversity since many varieties are endangered. By eating flowers you’re helping to preserve these varieties for future generations to enjoy.
How to eat flowers
Most flowers can be eaten, some only once in a while though. The best ones to eat are those of the annual kind as these can be replanted every year.
Make sure to always ask a parent before ingesting any flower as some can be poisonous. Some of the types of flowers that can be eaten include:
Nasturtiums: This flower has an interesting taste that’s a bit spicy, but not overpowering. It also has a nice color to it so it would be great for a salad.
Amaranth: This flower has a slightly sour taste to it, making it ideal for salads and other dishes that are of the acidic variety.
Bachelor’s Buttons: These flowers have a mild taste that makes them ideal for other foods that have a more delicate flavor.
Clove Pinks: These flowers have a spicy taste to them. They’re not overpowering but they’re distinct enough to add some flavor to a meal.
Carnations: Carnations have an interesting taste to them that’s sort of hard to describe. It’s slightly bitter, but not overly so.
These flowers are best added to a main dish rather than a side dish.
Sage: Sage flowers have a very distinct flavor that’s very hard to hide. Due to this they’re usually used as a main dish garnish or as an addition to meats.
They go particularly well with turkey and other game meats.
Bachelor’s button flower is mildly sweet, making it ideal for desserts.
Marigolds: While technically a vegetable, marigold flowers have a nice citrus flavor to them making them a great addition to salads and other dishes.
Rosemary: Rosemary flowers have a very strong taste that’s a bit hard to explain. It has a bit of a savory taste but it’s still light enough that it could be used in a main dish or a dessert.
These flowers are hard to come by so use them sparingly.
Lavender: The taste of lavender is a bit on the bitter side so it’s only ideal for desserts. Some people describe the taste as being like candy.
Nigella: This flower has a very distinct and pungent taste. Other than adding flavor to a meal this flower is also great at hiding other flavors.
This makes it great to use if you need to mask the flavor of a medicine you have to take.
Borage: Borage has a very distinct and strong taste. While this flower adds a nice flavor to foods it also has a distinct look to it making it unappealing to look at.
Tips for eating flowers
-Always ask a parent before you eat any flowers. Some flowers while not dangerous can still have negative effects on you if you’re allergic to them.
-Only pick flowers that you know are not protected. While picking a few flowers here and there isn’t going to do any major harm it can still have an effect if enough people do it.
-If you plan on eating the flower leave it outside in a glass of water so it stays fresh for as long as possible. Depending on the flower this can range from a couple days to a week.
-Some flowers can be preserved by placing salt on them. This helps to draw out the moisture, killing the flower but keeping its look for as long as a year if kept in a dry place.
-Don’t put the flowers in direct sunlight as this will cause them to wilt faster.
-Wash the flower before you eat it. Ingesting some of the dirt or pesticides on the flower can have an adverse effect on you.
-If you’re allergic to a certain type of flower don’t eat it! While most flowers won’t harm you, if you have an allergic reaction to it it can be fatal.
There are two ways to skin a rabbit, the fast way and the slow way. In both cases you’ll need a sharp blade and a bit of knowledge of where to cut.
The fast way is easy to understand so I’ll explain the slow way since it might come in handy later.
There are several areas on a rabbit that have no nerves or mostly no nerves. These are the areas you want to cut in order to skin the rabbit without causing it to die too quickly.
First cut along the bottom of the foot until you hit the leg, then carefully continue cutting up the leg. You’ll need to cut through the hipbone but this is easy since it’s already partly exposed. Now move to the lower part of the stomach and make a long vertical cut that goes just below the ribs. Then carefully make another cut underneath until you reach the other side. Following this the skin should easily come off. Carefully making an incision where the front leg meets the chest and pulling it off is the final step.
Rabbits can kick at you with their back legs so be careful. Skinning a rabbit quickly is a great thing to know, but in most cases it’s better to take your time since the rabbit is going to be dead anyway.
Making a snare is a handy thing to know for survival. If you don’t have time to make a proper trap then making a snare is better than nothing.
It’s a simple loop that tightens around whatever gets in it, the more energy you put in it the tighter it gets as the prey tries to get out. The important part of this is to secure the loop to something so that the prey doesn’t get loose and Skunk doesn’t get loose either.
The easiest way to catch small prey is with a deadfall trap. Find a tree that’s about to fall and cut through the base of it.
Make sure that it’s lined up where you want it to fall and start cutting from the bottom. You’ll have to keep adjusting it until it falls where you want it. Now there are two ways to make the trap loop. The first is to cut out a wedge from the middle of the falling tree. This wedge should be about a foot or a foot and a half wide at the base and should be relatively thin, half an inch or so. The second way is to use a saw to cut the branch halfway through and bend it back against the tree, then just sharpening one side to make a spike. This is more work but it can be easier to hide and you don’t have to use as much energy cutting since the tree will be doing most of the work.
When the tree falls it should secure the loop and tighten it around the prey’s neck. This type of trap is used for small game such as rabbits or squirrels, anything bigger and you run the risk of breaking its legs which means you have to kill it before it suffers for too long.
Chapter 3: Staying Warm and Dry
Being wet can lead to several problems. It’s harder to stay warm when you’re wet, it costs more energy to do anything when you’re wet and being wet can result in nasty skin conditions.
You don’t want any of these things to happen, which is why you should put a lot of effort into keeping dry and warm.
There are three kinds of warmth: Short term, mid term and long term. Short term warmth is anything that keeps you from getting chilled over the next few hours, mid term is a little longer than that and long term is anything that keeps you warm for the days to come.
Short Term: The easiest way to keep warm when it’s cold outside is to run around. Exercise releases heat through your muscles, especially if you do something like sprinting or jumping as this uses muscles all over your body.
Sources & references used in this article:
Borage, calendula, cosmos, Johnny Jump up, and pansy flowers: volatiles, bioactive compounds, and sensory perception by L Fernandes, S Casal, JA Pereira, R Malheiro… – European Food …, 2019 – Springer
Nutritional and Nutraceutical Composition of Pansies (Viola × wittrockiana) During Flowering by L Fernandes, E Ramalhosa, P Baptista… – Journal of food …, 2019 – Wiley Online Library
Optimization of high pressure bioactive compounds extraction from pansies (Viola × wittrockiana) by response surface methodology by L Fernandes, SIP Casal, JA Pereira… – High Pressure …, 2017 – Taylor & Francis
Edible flowers: Bioactive profile and its potential to be used in food development by JA Takahashi, FAGG Rezende, MAF Moura… – Food Research …, 2020 – Elsevier