Pacific Rockfish with Edible Flowers


By Chefs Ed Tuson and Sinclair Philip

Pacific rockfish and steamed nasturtium flowers with tuberous begonia vinegar and pansy oil



  • 4 5- to 6-ounce pieces of Rockfish
  • 20 to 25 nasturtium flowers Tropaeolum majus
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • pansy oil


  1. Put a medium-size steamer over high heat and bring to a boil. Season fish with salt and pepper.
  2. Place nasturtium flowers over each fillet.
  3. When the water has reached a boil, place the fillets in the steamer.
  4. Steam for 4 to 6 minutes, depending upon the thickness of the fish, or until the fish begins to flake.
  5. Remove the fish from the steamer and place on a plate.
  6. Drizzle 1 tablespoon of pansy oil and 1 1/2 tablespoons of tuberous begonia vinegar (see recipe below) around the plate and serve.


Chef's Warning: Be sure to use tuberous begonias Begonia x tuberhybrida. The petals contain oxalic acid. Eat them in moderation. Do not eat petals from any other begonias, only hybrid tuberous begonia flowers are edible. Wax begonias are carcinogenic.

Do not use sprayed flowers from florists, non-organically grown flowers or flowers that you are not sure are edible. Many flowers are poisonous and some poisonous flowers share common names that are similar or the same as flowers that are safe to consume.

For more information on edible flowers: Creasy, Rosalind, Cooking From The Garden, Sierra Club Books, San Francisco.

Barash, Cathy Wilkison, Edible Flowers From Garden to Palate, Fulcrum Publishing, 1993.

This segment appears in show #2814.

Recipes courtesy of Ed Tuson and Sinclair Philip

© 2003 Ed Tuson and Sinclair Philip

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