Saturday, May 12, 2012

dandelion fritters with cheese

The dandies have come out in full force and our yard looks like it's covered with a thousand tiny suns. (okay, maybe more than a thousand)  We've had bouquets in the house, been wishing on puffs, eating leaves, picking flowers and digging roots.  The dandelion is such a useful plant.

Dandelion "honey" is one of my kids' favorites, and they've been requesting it and dandelion bread already.  I was in the mood for something a little more savory the other night so instead I made some fritters.

The kids gathered a basket of nice, full, dandelion flowers and I cut some chives from the herb garden.  We had some leftover corn in the fridge and some cheddar cheese so they went into the mix as well.  I stirred it all into a batter and deep-fried them.  The result was a fritter that was crispy on the outside and puffy on the inside with a mildly sweet/oniony flavor.  They were really good with a little dip in ranch dressing.

dandelion fritters

2 cups dandelion petals, greens removed (I cut mine off as seen here)
1 cup finely grated cheddar
1 cup cooked corn (I bet other veg would be good too)
1/4 chopped chives

mix into batter:

1 egg
1 cup flour
3/4 cup milk with 1/2 tsp vinegar added
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder

Stir until everything is good and goopy.  It shouldn't be runny, but if it is, add a bit more flour.
Drop mixture using a table spoon into medium-hot oil in a sturdy pan.  They cook quickly.  Flip when they're a deep golden tan.  Place on a wire rack or towel to drain.


You can wash your dandelion petals if you'd like.  If you trust the source to be free of pesticides and pet "traffic" you can skip it.  We pick from a clean area so we generally skip it.

The dandelion petals give pretty little flecks of color to not only fritters and breads, but cookies, ice cream, and more.  My husband isn't a fan of the dandelion-covered yard but I'm hoping to change his mind through food...he'll eventually see it my way.  Maybe.

Happy Weekend, everyone!


Rachel~At the Butterfly Ball said...

Those sound Delicious! Thanks for sharing the recipe! Most of our dandies have already finished their first big flowering, and we don't have as many blooming at a time now... but I plan on trying this as soon as we have more blooming again! My kids love foraging for food, there is something so satisfying for everyone about it.

Jacqui Wise said...

I'll never look at dandelions in the same way again! I knew you could use the young leaves in salads but I didn't know you could use the flowers in cooking. As kids we used to collect them for a neighbour who used to make dandelion wine. Thanks for sharing your recipe.

Sandies' Patch said...

We have an abundance of the golden beauties but, they are not looked upon with much respect around here. I am fast becoming a fan when you realise their potential for a 'something different' meal and how many insects and birds rely on them for food and nesting material (the not wuite gone to seed stage is downy soft and the chaffinches collect it for their nests).
Our main TV service, the BBC show a programme called , Countryfile' most Sunday evenings and a couple of weeks ago, they met a forager who made all sorts of things from not just dandelions. the recipe they chose was for Dandelion and onion bhajies, which sounded delish! I'm going to check i-Player and see if I can get the full recipe from the programme.

Lovely pics of your children being so careful with the dazed Ovenbird, Bless!

Sandie xx

Jessica Jo said...

Amazing. We don't really have any kind of vegetation in our yard, but there are plenty of parks around here that overflow with these lovely goldens. I wander if they use pesticides... I should call the local park office, eh?

And not only has this post inspired and encouraged my desire to try dandelion foods, it's also leading me on a trail through food storage options. I should have a better food storage system. Thank you!

Colleen said...

These look great! I'll have to try making them! It will also help me use up so of my chive abundance. :)

Tumus said...

I will have a dandelion "area" wild area when we move to the country but for now and for the sake of my garden beds I have to use spray iron to control them and conform to "suburbia" standards.

Anonymous said...

We eat something like this, also we eat sauteed leaves with green onions garlic and fresh baby spinich with mushrooms sliced thin... then we add salt pepper and a little lemon.
My grandmother used to make a salve to relieve those sore muscles from too much farm work. Here it is just for you.

Fill a mason or ball jar with slightly wilted dandelion blossoms.(have the kids pick em in the morning.) Then add to it first press olive oil mix with a chopstick or butter knife. add a cheese cloth to the top then add a jar ring. leave in the sunny window for 4 weeks.
Decant the oil (strain through the cheesecloth or if soiled use a clean cheesecloth)squeeze out the oil from the flowers. Put into a dark bottle.
To make a salve add to a double boiler, place 1/4 oz of bees wax
and 1 3/4 oz of the above oil. Stir until the bees wax is melted. Turn off heat pour into small container after cool enough to handle but not set yet.

use on tire sore muscles and joints.. relives joint pain over time as well brings down swelling.
Can be made in bulk amount just wanted to give you in a test size.
It keeps very well.
Hope you can try it it feels great to the skin... my grandmother would use the dandelion oil on her scalp for a hair treatment for her dry scalp.
Have fun, my kids like to help me make this.

Rosangela Brino said...

Surprising, sure I'll try!

Anonymous said...

Will have to give this a try. I used to work at a nature center where we made fried dandelion flowers for a wild edibles class. I never got one, the kids gobbled them up like candy.

I do a program for younger kids on dandelions. Have a great costume I made years ago. Try my best to convey to the kids and adults that dandelions are good for them!


eidolons said...

You know what's terrible? I can't grow dandelions. They simple will not grow in our yard. My husband even went so far as to dig up some that he found on a walk and transplant them in our yard. No luck. Sadly I have to buy all of my dandelion dried.

julochka said...

they sound yummy! but those dandelion flowers take a long time to "process." we also have zillions of them around here and are doing our best to enjoy them. i did a dandelion onion bhaji the other night that was akin to your fritters. which reminds me, i need to blog that.

Kathy -MIQuilter said...

Looks and sounds good. I have a big crop to try it with. They also make a wonderful dye.

kale said...

I found your site via threaded basil and I have to say these fritters look fantastic!!


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