Violet Salad - Yum!

While I knew that the common violet was edible, I had never eaten one.  The way I look at it, you can't tell someone that eating a plant is of benefit to them unless you've experienced it, right?

So that's exactly what I did. There was still time to edit the identification post if my violet salad made me want to hurl, so I figured I'd better start picking my dinner!

You're looking at about half a cup of violets, both flowers and leaves.

The flowers had a slightly sweet taste to them, and were thoroughly enjoyable.  Even my three year old daughter agreed.  She ran about, picking purple flowers, placing the petals in her mouth, then saying, "Mmmm!  Purple flowers.  Yummy!!!"

The leaves were great, too.  If I had to choose between a salad filled with lettuce or one filled with violet leaves, I'd totally choose the violet leaves.  Hands down.

There was one interesting occurance after eating leaves, though.  They leave your mouth feeling not quite slimey, that's the wrong word, but more... slippery?  It wasn't a bad feeling.  It was actually pretty fascinating. 

This is due to the large amount of mucilage within the violet's leaves.  Mucilage is a gummy substance found in most plants that's formed of proteins and polysacharrides.  There's a higher than average concentration of it in violets, which is why I had the strangely awesome slippery feeling in my mouth. 

Evidently, this mucilage is also good to use when you have a cough or a sore throat.  Bonus!

Would I eat this again?  Yes.