Sunday, April 4, 2010
Tonight I made us some Buffalo wing style poppers and boy were they good. To make them simply cut fresh, just opened dandelion flowers as close to the flower head as you can. The stems have milky sourness in them so be sure to cut as much off as possible but not so much that the flower falls apart. Rinse well and strain. Dip in your favorite deep fry batter and deep fry. For the Buffalo wing sauce I use tobasco , mix in a dab of butter and touch of salt and coat the poppers well and place in 350 degree oven for 10 minutes . Serve hot with ranch or bleu cheese dressing. For a more dessert like popper try coating the cooked flowers with cinnamon and sugar.
My next foray with the dandelion is going to be making a coffee replacement. To make "coffee" dig the roots up wash, wash and wash again. chop fine in a food processor and bake at 225 for a few hours. The dandelion root will go from a light beige color to a rich coffee like color when done. Cool the dandelion grounds and store in air tight container.Start with a blend of 1 tbsp grounds per cup of drink, adjust to your liking.
I enjoy making vinegars with dandelions as well as vinaigrette. I find it a good way to get some of the health benefits of the dandelion all year long. Dandelion helps both the liver and gall bladder to break down fat, by stimulating the flow of bile thus helping to prevent gallstones. Dandelion also helps the liver with its process of detoxification as well as benefiting kidney function,( as it has diuretic properties, which makes it beneficial for anyone suffering from a urinary infection). Dandelions also contain potassium, magnesium, niacin, calcium, phosphorus, proteins, iron, sulphur, zinc, vitamins B1, B2, B6, B12, C and E. They are also a richer source of provitamin A (beta carotene) than carrots. Because the leaves are rich in readily available magnesium, dandelion is also a great herb for improving bone health. Magnesium increases bone density, so dandelions may actually help to prevent bone disorders such as osteoporosis.
Medicinally dandelions can be used as a liver tonic and as a mild diuretic. The roots may be dug in fall or early spring and tinctured. A dropperful of this alcohol extract twice a day is a time-honored remedy for liver complaints. The milk from Dandelion stems can cure warts. It should be applied three times each day. Teas can also be made from the leaves and flowers and drank for liver and gall bladder cleansing. I personally do not care for the tea much but for medicinal use, it is not something I would like to drink a cup or two of every day.The milk from Dandelion stems can cure warts. It should be applied three times each day. Dandelions are currently being studied for control of blood sugar because of the inulin contained within them.
There are many more things that dandelions can be used in both culinary and medicinally. For some really nice and different recipes from cakes, to cornbread, pancakes and wine amongst others check out