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How to crystallise Spring wildflowers


Edible flowers add a pretty burst of colour to any bake. Spring flowers may only bloom for a few weeks before the season moves on, so this is a super way to preserve them for use for summer cakes, iced biscuits and celebration puddings. Once thoroughly dried out they should last for up to six months if stored in an airtight tin.

Many spring blooms from your garden are suitable for crystallising; all primulas and primroses are edible, as are violets, mint leaves, forget me not flowers and borage (and rose petals later in the summer). Pick the flowers on a dry sunny morning and leave them somewhere safe for a few minutes to allow any little bugs to make their escape; don’t use flowers from garden centres as they may well have been sprayed with chemicals.


1 egg white

Caster sugar

Kitchen paper

A clean paintbrush

  1. Prepare your materials. Tip the egg white into a bowl, add one teaspoon of water and whisk with a fork until gently frothy.
  2. Pour some caster sugar into a second bowl and line a tray with kitchen paper.
  3. Remove the green stem from the flower then paint it on both sides with egg white so that it is completely covered (but not soggy), ensuring that you wiggle the brush into every nook and cranny. I find it easiest to hold primroses and violets on the palm of my hand with the stalk trapped between two fingers, whereas the tiny forget me nots are best painted straight on to kitchen paper.
  4. Sprinkle caster sugar over the flower so every surface is covered, then lay it face down to dry for 24 hours.
  5. Store your sugar flowers in layers of kitchen paper in an airtight tin in a cool place for up to 6 months. Use to decorate cupcakes and desserts, or garnish cocktails; I had to make three batches of mint leaves for this project as every time I turned round they had been eaten by teenage boys!