Flowers Are Sprouting From Your Broccoli Plant – Can You Eat Broccoli Flowers?
4 Interesting Things To Know About Broccoli Flowers
If you’re new to gardening and decided to add broccoli to your palette, it’s safe to assume you still have little knowledge about it.
For starters, it’s one of the most traded vegetable in the world. The broccoli, being herbaceous, grows fast. The flower also buds fast, so when it reaches the stage where it blooms, you might doubt whether the yellow flowers are safe to eat.
But… can you eat broccoli flowers?
Before answering the question, let’s take a look at what we know about broccolis.
What Is Brassica Oleracea? A Scientific Review
Sounds like a Harry Potter spell, right? Well, the scientific name of broccoli is a combination of Celtic and Latin words for cabbage or vegetable. The name broccoli comes from the Italian word brocco which means sprout or bud.
The vegetable came from an artificial selection of the wild mustard (which is the real Brassica Oleracea), specifically by modifying the flower buds and stem parts of the wild mustard plant.
You might think it’s a genetically modified organism. You’re correct – mostly.
Broccoli is modified to have a large collection of flower buds at the center which are harvested for human consumption. It is a breed of the wild mustard like how dogs also have breeds, except that this vegetable doesn’t bite. This vascular type of plant was said to be cultivated first by the Romans in Italy and was later introduced to the world through the countless expeditions of colonization.
How Does Broccoli Grow?
Broccoli plants grow best in cold,sunny weather, which means it’s grown in the fall up to the start of spring. Individual plants are grown in spaced intervals. Vegetables are healthier when they are spaced appropriately.
Cold atmospheric conditions produce healthy curds. Lots of sunlight will create a greener, more nutritious buds.
So, can you eat broccoli flowers? Or is the broccoli you’re eating even a flower?
Is It A Bud Or Is It A Flower?
What you need to know is that the thing that we eat in our salads is not the fully grown broccoli flower yet. If you take a closer look at the curd, it’s composed of small shoots or buds.
These buds mature or bloom at different times depending on the variety. Most variants bloom at about 6 weeks, and this is what we call bolting.
So, for the final time, can you eat broccoli flowers?
Can You Eat Broccoli Flowers? Absolutely!
You might find it peculiar at first, but it’s not uncommon for flowers being part of our diet - some even make great teas! So, don’t be surprised.
The difference between the buds and the flowers, in terms of consumption, rely on their nutritional value.
The buds are great source of vitamin C, dietary fibers, Iron, Calcium, and even protein. Broccoli is also known to help prevent cancer, especially stomach and intestinal cancers. It’s also used to reduce bad cholesterol. The soluble fibers digested from the vegetable bind with the cholesterol in the blood, making it easy to get rid of naturally. It’s also a good source of vitamin A which helps promote good eyesight.
In addition to being pretty, the fully-bloomed broccoli flowers are edible, but they have very less nutritional value and taste rather bitter. So, yes, you can eat it. It’s not poisonous or anything, but it doesn’t help much with your health or even your food.
It’s understandable that you might have asked or searched for answers regarding the yellow stuff coming out of your broccolis. It’s such a waste to throw away when you don’t understand anything that’s actually happening.
If it’s just a few flowers, it’s not yet too late to pick the curd and just take the flowers off, but it won’t be good for storage, and you will have to cook it as soon as possible. You can probably make a good tea out of the flowers’ petals and experiment on them. You will never know what good things you’ll discover.