Sweet Violet or English Violet (Viola odorata) - Plant
Potted plant - 75mm pot.
Wonderfully fragrant flowers of Viola odorata are an indispensable perennial for the shade garden. I grow mine mainly as a ground cover especially under trees. This plant makes an excellent weed suppressant. Flowering time is late winter to early spring. The flowers are on short stems so not ideal for cutting. However, this is the variety I use for cooking. It is very easy to grow preferring humus rich, moist but well drained neutral - alkaline soil in a semi shaded position.
- ¼ cup packed violet petals
- ½ cup caster sugar
- ½ teaspoon lemon zest
- Pick violets fresh and remove as much "green" as possible.
- Gently rinse and allow to dry thoroughly.
- Add sugar, violets, and lemon zest to a food processor until the petals are broken down evenly into the sugar, about 10 seconds.
- Place baking paper on a tray and spread the violet sugar evenly around. Cover with cheesecloth and leave at room temperature in a dry spot for 1 to 2 days. If you live in a humid area the violet sugar will take longer to dry. Stir sugar around occasionally to encourage even drying.
- You can also dry the violet sugar in the oven on a very low temperature. Check reguarly.
- It is important to properly dry your violet sugar. If dried properly it will store for a year in an airtight container.
- Violet sugar is used to decorate cakes and biscuits.