Candied violets are a Victorian delicacy, and if you have violets popping up in your lawn now, you can transform them into a sugary adornment for cupcakes, garnish for a cocktail or addition to a cup of tea. Violets are edible, but ONLY if they are growing among untreated grass. Because I keep bees in our backyard, I do not spray for dandelions or treat the lawn with any chemicals. Here is how you can make these lovely, edible delights.
1. Pick violets and leave their long stems on for easier dipping. Gently rinse them in a bowl of water, and lay them on a clean kitchen towel.
2. Over medium heat, dissolve 1 1/2 cups of water with 1 cup of sugar. Mix in 1 teaspoon rosewater. Once dissolved, remove from heat and allow to cool.
3. Holding the stems, dip each violet in the syrup and tap off excess so that the flower is evenly coated. Lay violets on a piece of parchment paper.
4. Before the violets dry, dip each in very fine caster sugar to coat. I found it helpful to have a little pastry brush to adjust the petals and to spread them out flat again.
5. Snip off the stems and allow the violets to dry for a day at least. They will crystallize and the sugar will preserve the flowers for several weeks. To store, lay them flat on pieces of parchment and stacked in an airtight container.