Tricks, Tips and a Recipe
Dandelion Greens…they’re dandy!
By: Leanne Ely
Most of us are familiar with the common yellow weed that marks the onset of spring in many parts of the country.
Dandelion greens are the enemy to gardeners everywhere, but these flower bed nuisances are actually real nutritional superstars.
Dandelion greens are very high in vitamins A, B, C and D. They are rich in magnesium, potassium, iron, zinc and calcium. Dandelion greens are commonly used in contemporary herbal medicine because of their diuretic properties. They’re used to suppress appetite and as a digestive aid – dandelion greens are great for gut health.
I know dandelion greens are good for me, but I also love their bitter flavor. I enjoy dandelion greens sauteed in some olive oil, rendered bacon fat or a little butter with garlic, onion and some salt and pepper. They are absolutely delicious served alongside bacon and eggs in the morning. Mmm mmm!
Are you getting hungry for dandelion greens?
Now, it’s time for your Trick!
If your lawn is full of dandelion greens in the spring and you are confident that chemical herbicides have not polluted the soil or air around your home, go ahead and harvest your own! Choose pale green leaves (the pale green leaves are tastiest) and get them before the plant flowers. After the dandelion plant flowers, the greens become more bitter. If you can manage to keep the root in tact with the plant, the greens will last longer in the fridge if you’re not eating them right away.
Wash your dandelion greens thoroughly under running water after you harvest them, or bring them home from the grocery store. Wrap them in damp paper towels and keep them in the fridge for up to a week. You can freeze dandelion greens after they’re cooked.
And your Recipe:
Orange, Apricot, Dandelion, Kale, and Spinach Juice
1 cup dandelion greens
2 mandarin oranges, peeled, leaving pith
1 apricot, pitted
1 thick slice bitter melon
1 thick slice ginger root
1 cup spinach
5 kale leaves
2 stalks celery
1 cup parsley
All ingredients are best organic. Wash and dry all ingredients, and run through the juicer one at a time. For smaller leaves, like parsley, bunch them together tightly to form a “solid” leaf vegetable for better juicing. Chill (if desired), stir, and enjoy!
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