Ever been on a nature walk in a desert like area? Then you might have seen the beautiful wild sunflowers! Wild sunflowers thrive in a desert like area especially along the roadsides. Lucky for me I am surrounded by them where I live. The sunflower is called a Sunflower because it is the flower that follows the sun. It is slender and hairy to prevent water loss. They require all sunshine and can even survive a drought. They flourish in the summer and fall. They also spread their seeds in the wind and once their season is over, they hibernate so to say and all the rain from the spring waters them and then they will bloom in the summer. They are also quite popular for fall harvest decorations as well as for their tastiness. They are also great for mood lifting. I mean how could one look at such a beautiful bright sun loving flower and not feel happy!
Did you know you can eat sunflowers for more then their seeds? Well you can, however the wild sunflowers have smaller seeds that can be black and tiny or medium and more of an off-white color and they are usually ripe in August and September. You can cook the seeds by baking them or pan frying them. You can also ground them up into a powder to use in baking for a more natural ingredient. Some even eat the seeds raw on salads along with the petals! The petals add great nutrients and color to a salad but wait there is more! You can boil or fry the flower buds and eat them like a Brussel sprout! YUM! How about some steak and roasted garlic sunflower buds?! Sounds tasty doesn’t it?
Even bakers will use them in their products whether its for color to brighten up a cake or pastry but also as an ingredient for a more natural approach. I love to go pick the wild sunflowers to use in my house as a beautiful decoration but also as a tasty colorful salad. A great salad example would be some fresh spinach topped with sunflower petals and seeds along with cranberries and feta cheese, all topped with a delicious homemade vinaigrette. A delicious pastry example would be a cranberry oatmeal sunflower muffin. Sunflowers and their petals all look so elegant on a beautiful fall wedding cake with the colors white, maroon, or even a brown. Best part is that though it’s a flower it is edible and good for you and who wouldn’t want a dessert with a healthy twist that can make you feel less guilty for eating it.
Need some recipe suggestions here are some! Enjoy!!
Sources: Edwards Greenhouse