Some flowers are edible, such as rose, calendula, but also nasturtium or pansy. Adding flowers to recipes not only contributes to making the dish more cheerful, but also healthier. In fact, as we have seen, flowers can bring valuable antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, analgesic and neuroprotective properties. Be careful though, not all flowers are edible, so avoid collecting flowers in the fields because you could confuse them with other toxic species. In addition, if you grow the flowers personally you will also be sure of their biological origin since, in the case of edible flowers, it is good to avoid the use of pesticides. Finally, it is possible that the flowers can cause allergies in predisposed people, therefore, always start with very small quantities, you can always increase them later! Today we talk about the properties of two other edible flowers, lavender and zucchini flowers.
Violet lavender spikes that sway in the sun, what a wonderful sight the lavender fields are! But lavender is also a wonderful seedling to grow in the garden or on the balcony. In fact, every now and then, when you feel blue, you can rub its flowers between your fingers and inhale the relaxing and soothing aroma. Lavender, however, is also much more. In fact, lavender is one of the edible flowers, together with calendula and daisies, with the highest content of antioxidants, including anthocyanins, carotenoids and triterpenoids. Thanks to these substances, lavender helps to counteract the aging processes, but it is also useful to protect the brain from degenerations and to counter high blood glucose values ??(Nowicka et al, Antioxidants, 2019). Lavender is generally considered a safe food and is perfect to be added, in small quantities because the aroma is intense, with yogurt, ricotta, but also fruit salads or in herb pesto, really excellent and refreshing in this period.
Here is another good reason to try to grow zucchini, their yellow and full-bodied flowers! Even the zucchini flowers can be eaten, added raw to salads or to the sauces of summer pasta. For example, in the Healthy Food section of the app you can find the tasty preparation of pasta with zucchini, cherry tomatoes and zucchini flowers. Zucchini flowers are appreciated for their hypoglycaemic action, but they are also able to reduce cholesterol (Morittu et al, Nat Prod Res, 2019). Not only that, zucchini flowers also bring valuable antioxidants and the female flowers, those from which the fruit then develops, have more antioxidant capacity than male flowers, the one with the thinnest stem (Tarhan et al, Plant Foods Hum Nutr, 2007). Finally, a substance called spinasterol has been isolated from zucchini flowers, which has shown to counteract tumor development (Villasenor et al, Teratog Carcinog Mutagen, 2000).