I made my last batch of flower sugar last week when my lilacs were in final bloom. I love "lilac sugar", it has such a unique flavor and can really add a twist to some common dishes and drinks. I espcailly like to add it to Green tea or Jasmine flower tea.
You can make all types of flower sugars with edible flowers like violets, lilacs and roses; just make sure the flowers are orgaincally grown with no chance of them being misted with any type of insectide.
My 2 year old daughter was so excited to make the flower sugar with me this year that I had to share this simple recipe. Children love to interact in the kitchen and especially with this project they can really get involved wihtout getting too messy or without ingesting too many goodies!!
Flower Scented Sugar Recipe
2 cups granulated sugar (I use organic sugar in the raw) 1 cup violet, rose or lilac petals, gently crushed to release aroma
Combine the sugar and petals in a glass container (washed spaghetti jars work great for this), shake well as to evenly distribute the petals. Cover the jar and let it sit at room temperature for about a week; don't leave it near the stove where it could warm it up and increase melting. After a week or so, sift the sugar to remove the flower pieces (I actually leave the flower pieces in if I am using a dusting of sugar for a cake or brad topping - people are amazed that they are eating flowers!). Enjoy the delicious scent and store the sugar in the same glass jar. You can substitute the flower sugar for any plain sugar in any recipe for cookies (sugar cookies are very yummy), breads, plain cakes (angel food cakes are tasty too), jams/jellies or syrups.
This can get addicting and you will be so sad when you use the last of your flower scented sugar that you will want to rush the year by to make more.
I like to be creative and when most people see flowers on a plate they will not touch them at all, so how do you get your friends to try something new? Easy, fool them into thinking the flower is a sugar garnish!!! Violets work best for this . . . pick fresh organic violets, use a small craft brush and lightly coat the petals with egg white and dip into crystal sugar. You can shake off the extra so it doesn't look caked on. Heat your oven to about 250F and bake petals for about 8-10 minutes or until you see the leaves start to wilt. Ovens and temperatures vary so it may be a little trial and error until you get the timing perfect for your oven. Garnish as you like!
A family friend always did this in the spring and it was so magical to see the flowers coated with sugar - they looked like tiny dew drops on the petals, I use to call them fairy tears when I was a child and still do today!!!
Happy harvesting your petals and happy cooking!