Dandelions For Dinner

May 21, 2016, by Ken Jorgustin

dandelions-for-dinner

Dandelions are considered a nuisance by many, but to those in-the-know regarding foraging, the dandelion is a source of free food. Did you know that dandelions are edible?

Dandelions are probably the easiest plant to identify, and are quite widespread. The entire dandelion is edible, from the root to the flower, and they can be found quite easily in many areas, even in early spring or late fall.

If you look out your window right now, you might even see some…


 
The dandelion flower can be eaten right off the plant. The young ones taste the best. As they grow bigger and more mature they will develop a slightly bitter taste.

The leaves can be eaten too. Young leaves taste best. As they mature, they develop a bitter taste. By briefly boiling them, much of the bitterness will be removed.

The roots can also be eaten, however it is advised that you boil them.

The water used from boiling can even be drunk as a tea afterward.

 
Note: Olive oil will take away some of the bitterness.
Note: Know where your dandelions come from. Have they been sprayed with lawn chemicals?

 
Dandelions are loaded with vitamins and anti-oxidants and are one of nature’s richest green vegetable sources of beta-carotene, from which vitamin A is created (14,000 units/100 g leaf). They also are a very good source of Folate, Magnesium, Phosphorus and Copper, and a very good source of Dietary Fiber, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Vitamin K, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Vitamin B6, Calcium, Iron, Potassium and Manganese.

Who knew??

 
Foraging Books:

The Forager’s Harvest
A Field Guide To Edible Wild Plants
Foraging the Rocky Mountains
Northeast Foraging
Pacific Northwest Foraging
Southeast Foraging