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Common names: Clove pink and Gillyflower
Family: Caryophyllaceae
Dianthus is derived from the words dios, meaning “divine”, and anthos,
meaning “flower”. These beautiful pink flowers were used by the Greeks
and Romans in coronets and garlands. During the 17 th century, it was
discovered that pinks could be crystallized and the petals started being
used in cordials, wines, soups and sauces.
Medicinal: The petals can be used as a cordial or infused in white wine
to make a nerve tonic.
Culinary: Prior to eating the petals, individually separate each petal and
remove the white heel on each one. The white part can be quite bitter in
taste. Once that is done, the petals can be added to salads and
sandwiches. The pink petals can also be used to add flavour to jams,
sugars, syrups and fruit pies or crystallized to decorate desserts.
Additional Uses: Petals can be dried and added to potpourri, scented
sachets and cosmetic products.