Batter-Fried Dandelion Blossoms


I'm reposting this recipe in honor of the Wild Things Round Up, which is featuring dandelion (root, leaves, and flowers) for the month of April. If you've got a dandelion recipe that you'd like to contribute to the foraging challenge, please email it to Bek and I at wildthings.roundup@gmail.com

Seems like they're everywhere this time of year, their cheery blossoms gazing toward the sun. And in my eyes, dandelions make the ideal foraged food. They're super nutritious, every part is edible, and perhaps best of all, anyone can recognize a dandelion.

I've taken particular joy this year in using my bike to expand my foraging possibilities. And today was no different. I remembered a spot, just a few miles from home, where a field was yellow with dandelions, and free from human contaminants. I stashed an old quart yogurt tub in my pack, and filled it to the brim with dandelions heads. It's fun to zip off on my bike, and return with free food. Free food, y'all!

Most dandelion blossom recipes are a bit labor-intensive, requiring the petals to be plucked from the flower heads. Talk about slow food! Not so with this recipe, the entire blossom (sans stem) is utilized. Simply dunk the dandelion blossoms into a nicely seasoned batter, and fry. Can't wrap your head around the idea of eating dandelions? Think of fried dandelion blossoms as the country mouse cousin of fried squash blossoms (foodies' fried flower darling).

I used a cornmeal-based batter for crunch - a few big spoonfuls of cornmeal, one spoonful of cornstarch, a tiny sprinkling of baking powder, lots of onion powder and black pepper, salt, an egg, and enough milk to thin it to pancake batter consistency. But use any wet batter you please. Just be sure to season it really well, because, frankly, that's mostly what you'll be tasting. The flavor of dandelion flowers is subtle.

Dip each dandelion blossom in the batter to coat, and fry in lard over a medium heat until golden and crunchy.

These are best eaten right out of the frying pan, so gather everyone around to munch the batches as they come out. I had a few leftover, so for dinner, I quickly re-crisped them in a skillet, then added them to my salad (mixed greens from the balcony hoop house, dandelion greens, goat cheese, vinaigrette, and a sprinkling of parm).

Do I even need to mention that you should use your noodle when foraging for dandelions? If there's even the slightest danger that they've been sprayed or treated, don't eat them. Also, try not to gather flowers that have been in close proximity to automobile, pedestrian, or doggy pollution.

I'm sharing this with Pennywise Platter Thursday.  Follow the link and enjoy some other nice recipes and articles.

Comments

  1. I still haven't been able to pick any dandelions but I found somebody else posting about them I thought I'd give you the link!
    http://www.eatingfromthegroundup.com/2011/04/dandelion-greens-with-dill-and-crispy.html
    I'll be going to the country side this weekend I'm looking forward to picking all sorts of things!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks for the link, and be sure to let me know what you harvest! I really do love hearing about what others are finding :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I did this sort of, using watered ground flax seed and apple cider vinegar as adhesive, I dipped the blossoms in that then a mix of whole wheat flour and dried seasonings. Came out AMAZING!

    ReplyDelete
  4. What a fantastic idea! I always forget about dandelions until they flower, at which point (I've heard), their greens are really bitter. Now I know what to do with those little yellow flowers! Thank you!
    http://mindofthemother.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
  5. Ani - Sounds like a good egg-free batter. I imagine just about any batter would work.

    Danielle - I've certainly found it true that the greens are more bitter after the plant flowers, but you can just use them in smaller doses, with other milder greens, or take advantage of their medicinal value.

    ReplyDelete
  6. these look GREAT and are news to me! I've always been told to just eat the new dandelion leaves and stop after the plant blossoms. Now, some commenters on my blog told me they eat the plant - roots and flowers too - all summer long.

    You're not deep frying the blossoms, right? Just pan frying? Your "recipe" cracks me up, but I think I can follow it. I don't regularly batter dip or fry anything, so I'm not totally familiar with the process.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Hi Margo - Apologies, but for the sort-of recipe, but I find cooking to be more art than science. Even if I were to start measuring, I'd have to constantly adjust, and it would suck the joy out of the process for me. The batter isn't really important, use whatever works for you to batter any old food.

    I shallow fry just to conserve my precious lard. These would probably be amazing deep fried.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Bike foraging is the best!!!

    Yesterday the dandelions exploded into flower in our area, so I'm planning on trying this recipe tonight.

    Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Bike foraging really is the best. If I only walked, I wouldn't be able to cover near as much territory as I do on my bike. Although learning to ride and look at plants simultaneously is a bit of a learned skill.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular Posts