Shokuyo-giku (edible chrysanthemum) (食用菊)

Shokuyo-giku is a kind of chrysanthemum which is especially grown as food. It is also called shokugiku.

As well as the small-flowered varieties such as garnish chrysanthemum used for dishes, there are big-flowered varieties only whose petals are eaten.

It is less bitter compared to the chrysanthemum for ornamental use and has a sugary taste. It is boiled and eaten with soy sauce dressing, or used for vinegared food, aemono (chopped fish, shellfish or vegetables, dressed with [miso or other] sauce) with walnuts, tenpura (Japanese deep-fried dish), and suimono (clear soup). Also there are processed food such as 'kikunori' (dried chrysanthemum sheet) or 'hoshigiku' (dried chrysanthemum), which are made by boiling or steaming petals and drying them in thin and square shape like dried seaweed.

Most are made in Yamagata Prefecture except the chrysanthemum garnish. They are grown in various areas in Tohoku region including Yamagata Prefecture and Hachinohe City, Aomori Prefecture, as well as in Chuetsu (middle) and Kaetsu (southern) regions of Niigata Prefecture. They are cropped in autumn.

Big flower varieties include Enmeiraku (such as Mottenohoka and Kakinomoto) which bears small violet flowers and Abokyu of yellow flowers.

Main Varieties
In Japan the following two varieties are popular. Not only their flowers are sold as food but young plants are sold at garden centers.

Abokyu: yellow small-flowered variety, double-petal flower. It is often used as a garnish or decoration for dishes such as sashimi.

Mottenohoka: light reddish purple medium flower variety. They have double-petal flowers. It is an indigenous product of Yamagata Prefecture and is used for dishes including vinegared food.
It is also called 'Mottegiku.'

[Original Japanese]