A Floral Feast

A Floral Feast

A Guide to Growing and Cooking with Edible Flowers, Foliage, Herbs and Seeds

By Carolyn Dunster Photographs by Joanna Yee

How to grow and harvest an abundant supply of edible ingredients from your garden

Flowers have probably been used in cooking for as long as people have been preparing and flavouring food. In China cooks were experimenting with chive flowers in 3000 BC and the Romans frequently added blooms to their dishes. Today flowers are often seen as an exotic extra employed only by professional chefs. While we are all taking a greater interest in the provenance of our food, adding more plant-based ingredients to our diets, experimenting with growing our own vegetables and eating to follow the seasons, edible flowers remain a bit of an unknown quantity.

A Floral Feast demystifies the idea of eating flowers and introduces readers to a whole range of blooms, leaves, flowering herbs and edible seeds that can be home-grown and used in a new way – by adding them to food. Whether drying hibiscus petals to concoct a soothing tisane, harvesting nigella seeds to use in savoury biscuits or baking a lemon-scented pelargonium cake, garden-grown flowers make wonderful ingredients and transform dishes into floral feasts.

As edible flowers are difficult to source, Dunster shows how to grow an abundance of edible flowers to guarantee a regular and plentiful supply of chemical-free ingredients. A Floral Feast covers harvesting, drying and preserving methods, and a wide range of culinary uses and techniques.

Carolyn Dunster is a botanical stylist, planting designer and garden writer. She writes about flowers, plants and productive gardens for various magazines including Bloom, Wildflower, The Garden and The English Garden. Previous books include Urban Flowers (Frances Lincoln, 2017) and Cut & Dry (Laurence King, 2021). The latter has been translated into German, Dutch, Spanish, Russian, Czech, Simplified Chinese and Swedish, and won best practical book at the Garden Media Guild Awards 2021.

"Carolyn Dunster picks rose petals to make pavlova and harvests sunflower seeds for bread, among other floral treats."

Country Living
The Pimpernel Press Ltd
The Pimpernel Press Ltd
Product Format
230 x 170
Publication Date
Mar 7, 2024
Country of Manufacture
Number of Pages