We recently talked about one of my favorite ways to eat dandelions. Now let’s talk about another beautiful, edible wildflower: violets!
Upon seeing this glory spread through our front lawn, we first made sure that we did indeed identify the plant correctly. Next, we checked on its edibility. The flowers and leaves are edible, but the roots and seeds can make you sick. So make sure you only pick the tops, please, and always double check your plant identification and edibility when foraging.
I found a recipe for violet jam on the blog Emergency Outdoors. J has always been eager to help gather flowers, so this project was a welcome excuse to get a bowl and get picking.
This was a sweet, floral jam that pairs well with lemon poppy seed muffins or a light springtime bread. The color made me think to give it away for Mother’s Day. While I prefer jams with less sugar, it was still very satisfying to prepare a treat from wild food growing in our yard.
Emergency Outdoors provides all the details for this violet jam recipe. You will also find a wealth of information on violet there, including edible, medicinal, and perfumery uses- not to mention recipes for violet vinegar and violet syrup. Yum!
While we enjoyed trying the jam, I’d like to branch out this year and try using violet in other ways. I’ve compiled a list of violet recipes & resources that I’d like to try:
The Common Blue Violet– Common Sense Homesteading shares a violet jelly recipe (for those of you who prefer a clear spread), and shares various medicinal uses of violets.
The Health Benefits of Violets– From the Herbal Academy of New England. This amazing website provides a thorough review of violet and her medicinal uses. Check out her instructions for several different violet teas for health.
Let’s Talk About Violet- Amber of Pixie’s Pocket is bursting with enthusiasm for the little purple blooms that fill her yard each spring. Visit her blog for information on using violets for warts and acne, as well as a few links to wild violet recipes- like adding them to a wild greens pesto? That sounds delightfully different!
How to Make Wild Violet Syrup– ABCs & Garden Peas shares a method for making violet syrup- without heaps of sugar- and some ingenious ways to put it to use. I may have to try this to change up our maple syrup habits for springtime.
Five Uses for Violet Vinegar- I’ve seen a few recipes for violet vinegar, but always wondered what in the world you used it for. The Nerdy Farm Wife takes out the mystery and gives you five concrete ideas to get you started.
And of course, you can just plain eat them. They go well in salad, and the flowers are a wonderful outdoor playtime snack. The kids think it’s tons of fun to sit and munch flowers with mama. The novelty masks the health benefits, so they consume the blooms without hesitation. 😉
Which recipes are most appealing to you? What will you try first this year? I am eager to get started soon!