Thursday, April 2, 2015

Wild Edibles // Violet Ice Cubes

Hey y'all!  We're so excited that spring has finally arrived and with spring comes all sorts of wonderful things like wildflowers!  Gathering wild edibles is something that our family loves to do.  We really like learning about what is edible and the the different ways that you can use all of the many different plants that are all around us.

One of my (Alice) personal favorites is the violet, which is a pretty little flower with tons of different uses.  Although, what I'm showing you in this post isn't exactly a very filling way of using this plant, it is a very fun way to dress up your table this spring! :-)
First, as with any wild gathering, you'll want to make sure you properly identify the plant.  The violet is very easy to spot and fortunately is in almost every yard around here (northeast Alabama) in great abundance.  The five-petal flower has a very delicate, purplish blue color (pictured above) and has quite distinctive, heart-shaped leaves (pictured below).  Both the blossoms and leaves are edible, very delicious, and can be prepared many, many ways.
There are about 450 different varieties of Viola in North America and all of them are edible.  Pictured below is another variety that we have a multitude of in our yard as well.  As you can see, this variety has a more solid and deeper purple colored flower.  Its leaves are slightly different, but is still that distinctively violet heart-shape leaf with branching, parallel veins.

To make these cute violet ice cubes, the first
thing you'll need to do is go gather up some violet flowers.

Tip: to wash your flowers, simply rinse them
gently and pat dry with a paper towel and lay flat.
Then fill up your ice tray(s) with water and, very
gently, lay and submerge each little blossom.
Place the ice tray(s) in the freezer.

This is such a pretty way to decorate up any event
like a baby shower, tea party, little girl's birthday
party, or just as a fun addition to your table at home.
You could also get creative and try this
with a bunch of other edible flowers too.

I hope to post some more ways that we use the
violet really soon, so be sure to check back often. :-)

What kind of wild edibles do y'all like to gather?
What are some of the ways that y'all use violets?

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