History Dandelion

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donna

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
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May 12, 2010
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Now Florida but always a Kentuckian
Many consider dandelions a pest in the lawn. However, it has been and still is valued as a source of food and medicine.

The plant first appeared in the 10th century in medical journals of Arabian physicians. In the 16th century British apothecaries knew it as Herba Taraxacon or Herba Urinaria. In the 19th century the dandelion had become a potherb in Europe and America.

The dandelion was appreciated for its culinary use. Dandelion wine has a taste like sherry and is know as a tonic for the blood.
In many parts of the world, dandelion roots are toasted as a coffee substitute or as an addition to hot chocolate.

The young dandelion leaves, which are called greens taste a lot like chicory. They are used in salads. The flowers of the dandelion are used in butters and for garnishes.

A tip on preparing dandelion leaf: "Create a filling for savory pastries by combining minced dandelion leaf, ricotta cheese, feta cheese and a pinch of mint. Fill pastries and bake in a moderate oven until browned."

From: "Rodale's Illustrated Encyclopedia of Herbs", "Dandelions", pages 141-142.
 

Culper Bell

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May 2, 2019
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Location
Greensboro, North Carolina
Though I can agree that the greens are great in salads, I'm reluctant to try anything made with the flower. My child self had eaten his fair share of flowers dandelions from the yard, a very bitter surprise since most bright yellow things tasted like lemon drops.

Do you know if the dandelion is still bitter after fermentation? Or is it sweetened with excessive amounts of sugar rather than an inherent sweetness? I think my five year old self would like to know.:biggrin:
 
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