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The leaves have a very mild, almost bland flavour and can be used in quantities in salads. The texture is slightly tough, however, so we usually mix them in well with other leaves. The leaves can also be cooked, and are a nice addition to soups or stews where they will help to thicken them in much the same way as okra can be used.
Violet comes originally from Europe and since the days of Hippocratas has been in medicines, perfumes, love potions as well as in sweets. The greeks chose violet as their flower of fertility and both Greeks and Romans drank quantities of violet wine, made violet conserves and cosmetics. It became so popular that it was cultivated on a large scale to supply the needs of all the Mediterranean countries. The ancient Britons are known to have used violet as a cosmetic, mixing the flowers and goats milk for a skin lotion.
In the Middle Ages violets were grown in the physic gardens, being used for insomnia, as a laxative and formany other ailments.
The rhizome is used in folk medicine for conditions of the respiratory organs, particularly for dry catarrh and for rheumatism of the minor joints; additionally used for fever, skin deseases, inflammation of the oral mucosa, nervous strain, headache andinsomnia. The herb is used internally in folk medicine for coughs, hoarseness, tuberculosis, as an expectorant for throat inflammatins and bronchitis accompanied by fixed mucous, nervous strain, insomnia and hysteria. Externally, the herb is used in skin lavages for various skin diseases.
Acute and chronic bronchitis, bronchial asthma, coughs, chest catarrh, colds, and complications, spasmolytic, cough relieving. The flowers are used in folk medicine to prepare an infusion tea, which is used as an expectorant for bronchial catarrh, as an antitussive for chronic bronchitis, for whooping cough, asthma and migraine. Violet syrup is used as an expectorant and to lessen irritation for bronchial catarrh (children's remedy). The flowers are used internally in folk medicine for parasitic stomatitis and as an emollient for inflammatory diseases.
The viola odorata or sweet violet is both a wild and cultivataed plat with important healing properties.
The leaves contain glucosides which are antiseptic, whilst the flowers, taken as a tea or syrup, are expectorant and make a good cough medicine.
Nowadays violet perfume is in many cosmetic products, and the crystallised flowers are a familiar sight on violet-flavored sweets and chocolates.