Here in Mid-Coast Maine the daylilies are poised for a big display of flower power. Though each of those glorious blooms only lasts a day — what color, what form and what beauty — daylilies are one of summer’s standards in the sunny garden. As much as we enjoy just looking at them, apparently there’s even more to like about daylilies — they taste good.

And because the blooms are with us for just a day, we won’t mind dedicating a few to dishes like these  that come from Maria Zampini’s delightful e-newsletter “Upshoot.” She informs us that daylilies, like Pocket Full of Gold (above left), are edible and gives us a couple ways to prove that.

Here’s one way she suggests to try them:

Remove the stamens, rinse, dry and fry whole or strips after coating in a batter mix like Whistle Stop.

Include cleaned petals and chopped tender parts of stems and tubers in to salads.

Going further down the daylily culinary route, she offers a special beverage made with — what else? — daylilies!

Hemerocallis Coolers

Stay cool during dog days of summer with this infused drink:

Ingredients 12 daylilies (remove stamens)
½ cup sugar
2 cups spring water
7-UP
Apricot & Orange juice

Directions Make an infusion using 6 daylilies, ½ cup sugar, 2 cups of spring water. Bring to a boil. and simmer. Reduce by 1/3. Strain liquid and chill. Mix infusion equally with 1 part apricot juice, 1 part orange juice and 1 part 7-Up.

Pour over remaining daylilies, serve with ice. Garnish with borage and monarda flowers.

Tip – Eat daylilies in moderation, they can have a diuretic effect.

For more from Maria Zampini, visit the “Upshoot” website at: www.upshoothort.com

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