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Sunday, April 6, 2014

Flor de Itabo/Yucca Flower

Here are photos of some flowers I bought at our our feria last Friday:


These are the flowers of the yucca plant (Yucca guatemalensis), also known at Itabo. This is not the same as the yuca. So pretty and delicate - and edible! The yucca flowers and fruits around Easter time (Semana Santa) so that is why we see them in our markets at this time of year. I bought my bunch for 1,000 colones (about $2.00) from Ricardo Cortez Castro, the gentleman who sells his handmade miniature oxcarts at the feria and around Atenas.

Marcial Artavia, who makes and sells his terrific sausages at the feria (Sperone Italian Sausage) saw me walking around with them and called me over. He showed me how to pick the flowers off the stems and told me how he cooks them. They can be used in soups and omlettes or just sauteed in olive oil with salt and pepper.

Here is what I ended up doing: I boiled a few potatoes and added about a cup of the flowers towards the end, then drained them. I chopped the potatoes into cubes. Sautéd an onion and some garlic. When those were done, in went chopped tomatoes, achiote paste, boullion, and Lizano sauce. I also added a couple of Marcial's sausages. Then I tossed in the cooked potato cubes and flowers. It was very good.



Marilyn Stevens said...

Thanks for this post! I saw them all over our Feria (Grecia) and forgot to ask about them. Do they a distinctive flavor or more like zucchini blossoms?

Diana Miskell said...

The center of the flower is a bit bitter but the petals are not. You could use mostly petals but throw in a few centers for a bit more taste. Apparently they have lots of vitamins, etc.