Sunny Floral Desserts

I’ve told you that edible flowers are so much more versatile in the kitchen than just used in desserts.  They are.  But they also make incredible, mouth-watering desserts!  The main thing to remember is that edible flowers can be important ingredients in your dessert concoctions, not just decorations.  While candied violets are lovely, they are just the icing on the cake of what you can bake up in the kitchen with edible flowers.

Consider making a citrusy marigold cake spread with sweet floral butter.  Lemon balm and calendula combine in a sunny tea cake.  And who can resist frosted lemon lavender cookies!  Lavender pairs well with chocolate as well.  Add dried lavender buds to your chocolate cupcakes. Try anise hyssop flowers in your next pound cake instead of poppy seeds for a flavor between licorice and root beer.

The perfect topping to just about any dessert is floral ice cream, gelato, or sorbet.  To flavor these chilly desserts use some of the following petals steeped in the cream or sugar syrup:

  • Gardenias
  • Lavender
  • Anise Hyssop
  • Roses
  • Chocolate Mint
  • Hibiscus

Marigold Cake

  • 1 cup softened unsalted butter             
  • 1 cup sugar                                        
  • 4 eggs, beaten     
  • 3 tablespoons fresh Tangerine Gem Marigold petals
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour                      
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder    
  • Zest from one orange
  • Zest from one lemon

Grease and flour a loaf pan.  Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy; add beaten eggs a little at a time.  Sift the flour and baking powder; fold into creamed mixture.  Add the orange and lemon zest, and the marigold petals.  Spoon into the loaf pan and bake in preheated oven at 350 degrees for an hour.  Cool on rack for 5 minutes, then remove from tin and cool completely before serving.  Serve slices spread with sweet floral butters — see suggestions below.

Sweet Floral Butter Combinations

Start with 1/2 cup of unsalted butter, softened

Add in any of the following combinations:

  • Rose petal chiffonade, minced crystalized ginger, Red Clover petals, honey
  • Lilac petals, Red bud petals, honey, vanilla paste
  • Japanese honeysuckle petals, apple blossoms, honey

Lemon Balm Tea Cake

  • 3/4 cup milk             
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 tablespoons fresh lemon balm leaves and flowers 
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour                                                     
  • 6 tablespoons butter, softened            
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon fresh calendula petals

In small pan, heat milk and lemon balm until almost scalded.  Remove from heat and cool.  Mix the flour and baking powder together in a bowl.  In a separate bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until fluffy.  Add eggs one at a time, continuing beating.  Blend in the lemon zests.  Strain the lemon balm milk, discard the leaves and flowers, and add the milk and flour mixtures alternately to the batter.  Mix until just blended.  Pour the batter into a grease and floured loaf pan.  Bake at 350 degrees in a preheated oven for about an hour.  Meanwhile mix the lemon glaze (below) and set aside.  Cool baked cake in pan for 5 minutes, remove onto a wire rack placed over a cookie sheet.  Pour lemon glaze over cake while it is hot.

Lemon Glaze for Tea Cake: Put juice of two lemons, 1 teaspoon of calendula leaves (chopped), and 1 teaspoon of rose petals (chiffonade) into a bowl.  Blend in powdered sugar until a thick, but pour-able paste forms.

For more recipes go to BouquetBanquet and look at the blog and recipe pages.  Let us know what new concoctions you make with edible flowers and we’ll share them in one of our blogs.

Mother Earth Gardener
Mother Earth Gardener
Expert advice on all aspects of growing.