Gardeners detest them. Children make wishes on them. And the more you try and weed dandelions from your flowerbeds, the faster they will grow! So as my husband and I were busy in the garden, pondering how we might patch together a last minute meal for that evening, a little light bulb went on. We’d harvest a dandelion salad to accompany our grilled steak and organic roasted sweet potatoes. Delicious!
In his book Wild Edibles, Steve Brill assures us that “there are no poisonous look-alikes,” so I confidently went about the yard gathering an armload of the long, lace-shaped leaves. Higher in beta-carotene than carrots, this herbaceous delicacy is at its most tender before the plant has flowered, but today we had to make the best of what was on hand. And anyway, the sunny blossoms helped me identify my quarry without delay.
Too bitter or tough for your taste? Dandelion leaves are also delicious sautéed with a little garlic and olive oil and finished with a squeeze of lemon. Tonight, however, we chose to eat them au naturel and lightly dressed with lemon vinaigrette. Recipe below. Enjoy!
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon minced fresh garlic
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
freshly cracked black pepper
3/4 teaspoon fresh thyme
Gently stir the first five ingredients together, do not emulsify. Just before serving, add the fresh thyme leaves.