There’s something so very special about flowers. They seem to be the very essence of form and function. It is enough, for me, that they simply exist. However, when I can take their beauty and turn them into delicious food and put them up into the pantry for winter eating so much the better. Making flower jellies is a great way to not only take advantage of purposely planted blooms but also wildflowers and weeds, too.
Make Flower Jellies from Tea
Almost all flower jellies start by making a tea of the flower petals. That tea is then sweetened and gelled with the addition of pectin. Almost every recipe calls for steeping the flowers in water to make the tea.
However, there are some other choices. Instead of water, consider using white wine or apple juice for example.
Like any jelly be sure to can these flower jellies following safe canning procedures so that you can keep them in the pantry for the winter or give them as gifts later.
Violets tend to be one of the first blooms of spring and make a beautiful and tasty jelly.
Dandelions are almost always abundant. Leave some for the bees, of course, but if you’re pulling them from the vegetable garden save some of the petals for jelly.
Lilacs fill the air with their sweet scent in the spring and those blossoms are indeed edible. Lilac flower jelly is a great way to save spring for winter.
Lavender blossoms make for a delicious jelly when combined with Meyer lemon juice.
Honeysuckle flower jelly tastes like honey and is amazing mixed into oatmeal or served on toast.
The peppery bite of nasturtium flowers make for a sweet and savory jelly that go well with crackers and cheese.
Fireweed is beautiful and edible. It tends to grow in thick patches making it a snap to gather enough blossoms quickly for jelly.
Clover flowers, either red or white, can be used for a weedy jelly.
Hibiscus flowers make for a vibrantly colored and flavored jelly.
Dried Versus Fresh Flowers
Make the tea for flower jelly from fresh or dried flowers. To substitute dried flowers for fresh called for in many recipes – use 1/3 of the called for amount. For example, make the tea with 1/3 Cup of dried flowers instead of 1 Cup of fresh flowers. If the harvest season is too busy to make time for flower jelly, dry those flowers and make the tea in the dark evenings of late fall.
This spring and summer make the most of those beautiful blooms and make flower jellies that can be stored and enjoyed in the winter season.