Thursday, April 17, 2008

dandy dandelions

today we harvested the glorious dandelion flowers to start making our dandelion goodness...jelly, syrup, wine, fritters, burgers...the variations never end! you can never have too much of a good thing and one thing i could use a lot of is dandelions tonic power right now! but, even so, it's fun to play with your herbs too!

we started by harvesting 8 cups of flowers. why is it the biggest ones grew in the vacant lot next to us, in the sub division (an area that has never been sprayed or used. during the summer, after they mow, we harvest the dried grass to feed our goats. it's full of clovers and alfalfa and other goodness that they love. i'm sure the folks that watch us think we've gone mad!).here's the fun part, cutting the yellow petals away from the green stems (which will make your goodies bitter if left in).

8 cups of flowers yields about 4 cups of petals. at this point, i ran out of time so i stuffed them in a qt. jar and tossed them in the freezer. we'll harvest many more before we're done.
jaden proudly displays the finished product. she helped a lot with the picking and a bit with the separating. she is quite the little helper and i take every chance i can to teach her about herbs.

it would be so easy to turn dandelions alone into a unit study:

here's a page all about dandelions. and, there are always plenty of dandelion coloring pages. with the blossoms alone, one can make: dandelion jelly, dandy fritters, dandelion mead*, dandelion syrup (also great when made into dandelion soda (2 oz syrup: 8 oz seltzer water). be sure to always remove the green parts from the flower or it will be bitter. here's a new one for us to try: dandelion burgers!

that's just with the blossoms. imagine what you could do with the rest of the plant (i have lots of links for those as well but i'm too tired to add them tonight...maybe another time!)

*i have a mead recipe somewhere but i can't find it at the moment. we are still drinking our brew from last year.

3 comments:

The Unusually Unusual Farmchick said...

We have not had out dandelions pop up yet. We still have a few weeks before they usually do.
I still have dandelion wine yet to be tasted. Never thought to make mead with it...
Your children are so adorable!

june said...

What a neat post! I was just writing about saving dandelions the other day. Do you have a good link/recipe for dandelion wine?

Herbs~Art~Family~Love said...

That is wonderful!
I have tried to gather that much dadnelion without success yet so taking my hand at an elixir right now. lol
I had enough for that

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