Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Dandelions 3 Ways.

I'm not sure if this is a post about dandelions or an exercise in trying to improve my food photography. 
Let's say both.
Not perfect but I'm still learning.

Anyway, in a perfect world I am a master forager with infinite knowledge on all kinds of edibles, including mushrooms, making the most of the wilds that surround me.
But alas...

Let's start with what I do know.
Dandelions are extremely good for us.
And, in our chemical-obsessed-kill-the-weeds society,
we take them for granted. 
All they want us to know is that 
they're here for us...
if we need them.
That's why they're like...ya know...everywhere.

So get outside and start plucking those 
usually demonized little buggers.
I like to pick them in the quiet of the dewy morning when the interior of our house is at it's calmest and I can slip away 
unnoticed (most of the time).
It becomes a mini meditation with my eyes on the ground and my mind focused on the task.
When my bowl is full and my fingers numb from the cold earth I head back inside to clean my harvest.

This is easy.
Give them a rinse in said bowl then strain out the water and refill the bowl with cold water and let them rest.
Most of the dirt will settle to the bottom of the bowl.
They seem to enjoy sitting in the water.
I've kept them on the counter for several days in a bowl of water and they live quite well like that.

Dandelions are rich in vitamins (Vitamin A especially), minerals and are an excellent liver cleanser. 
The entire plant is edible including the root so try to get some of those too.

You can use them in several simple ways.

The first is tea.

Simply place a handful of leaves, roots, stems in a teapot.
Boil water.
Pour over dandelions.
Let steap for 10 minutes.

The second, and probably most common way, is in a salad.
I use smaller younger leaves when making salad.
They are delicious!

The third is to juice them.
You can use the whole plant for this one.
Mix them in with other greens and vegetables or 
just on they're own.

Here's to your health!

PS - Do not pick dandelions in yards that are treated with chemicals or near yards that are treated.

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