Dill is one of the most important herbs in the kitchen and gives salads and other dishes a special touch. Anethum graveolens is one of the umbelliferae that is easy to identify because it is one of the few species that develops a yellow flower. With the blossom, hobby gardeners are faced with the question of whether the leaves are still edible or whether the blossoms are also edible.
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Yellow umbelliferous flowers
Dill originally comes from the Near East and is not hardy. On rare occasions, its seeds will survive the winter, but only if it’s not too harsh. Dill is resistant to cold to a limited extent, if it is sown early in the spring and subjected to a subsequent cold impulse, it can quickly develop umbelliferous flowers as soon as it gets warmer again.
Dill blooms from May to August. If a warm autumn follows, flowering can last until September or early October. When in bloom, the plant can reach a height of up to one meter. When the dill blooms, it mainly puts its energy into the flower and hardly develops any more leaves.
The flowering umbel of dill is non-toxic and edible. The flower itself has a weaker dill flavor. But it is still very aromatic. It is harvested on a sunny morning. Cut off the umbel directly below the branch and then process it directly.
How to use the dill flowers:
- edible decoration
- starting vinegars
- starter oils
- Seasoned Salt
- pickled spice
A visual eye-catcher are the umbels in a base oil or vinegar. To do this, carefully push the umbels into the bottles. In terms of taste, it should be noted that the flowers naturally continue to give off a taste of oil or vinegar. You should therefore use the umbels sparingly so that the taste does not become too dominant.
However, the dill is popular with aphids, which can also transmit diseases to the plant. If the flower is covered with aphids, you should stop using it. However, you can use them for other purposes, for example for decoration.
If the dill flower is cut, not only remove the umbel, but the entire inflorescence. With the formation of the seeds, the dill has done its life’s work and dies. If the entire inflorescence is removed, this serves to extend the life of the plant and sometimes blooms a second time.
Once Anethum graveolens flowers, it forms only a few leaves. The leaves also remain edible. In terms of taste, there is little or no difference to the leaves that the dill developed before flowering.
Occasionally it can happen that the leaves become very large with the flower. In this case, you should only use the dill tips. The stalks become very firm and uncomfortable to chew. To a limited extent, coarser parts of the dill leaves are still suitable as a flavoring agent for soups, but you have to fish them out before you eat them.
Use dill flowers
Dill flowers can be used in many ways in the kitchen. Compared to the dill tips, they are milder and can be combined with numerous dishes.
It is important to harvest and process the dill flowers correctly:
- Cut off dill flowers only on sunny days
- only use fully opened umbels
- Do not wash umbels
- Allow the umbels to dry briefly
- Process the dill blossoms quickly
Once the umbels have been cut off, you should let them wilt briefly. This intensifies their aroma. However, this does not hold up as well when flowering compared to dried dill tips. You must therefore process the dill flowers quickly. When using herbal oils, you should let the umbels wilt for several hours, otherwise there is a high risk that they will start to mold in the oil.