I’ve been eating from the garden for a few weeks now, I’m still buying basics – lentils, garbanzo beans, brown flour, tapa dulce, oil, eggs, milk, cream cheese, chocolate and coffee, and some spices, but everything else is grown here. Tonight I made some curried lentil soup with pumpkin and papaya leaves and my new favourite: pan fried male papaya and pumpkin flowers. I’m eating the male flowers which have completed their task of supplying pollen: the female flowers will become fruit so are not for eating until they too finish their task. The flowers are surprisingly good just sautéed with some salt and pepper. And they keep their color and look so very pretty on the plate. The papaya flowers taste peppery and have a beautiful scent (while raw), they can be eaten raw just as well. I have quite a few edible flowers in the garden: banana, hibiscus, ginger, Madera negra, papaya and pumpkin – pinks, reds, yellows and whites. I could also use the bean flowers and the chayote, but would miss out on the fruits, I don’t know that they have male and female flowers. It would be something to make a whole dish from flowers alone. I’d feel like a big bee. The other day when I took some pumpkin flowers from the fridge to prepare them, I released a black bee, poor thing was quite chilled. The flowers open at dawn and close again by 11am, he must have been sleeping inside and got caught. We have lotus in the pond and I hear the flowers are delicious. Unfortunately the black bees think so too and they ate the last one completely.
Won’t give in to the cold
10 months ago