Perennial Vegetable Profile – Dandelions

Yes, you heard it right! Dandelions are an edible vegetable, and they are obviously very perennial. There is a long list of dandelion varieties that are suited for our garden types. I have not yet tried dandelions, but they are very closely related to chicory, which has a nutty flavor. They are usually labeled as chicory in many seed catalogs, I know that I would be hard pressed to order dandelion seeds if I saw them advertised as such!

The leaves of dandelions can be eaten as an additional to your salad greens. I know that right now, my dandelions in the yard are doing better than my salad. The dandelion leaves can also be blanched, like spinach, to improve the flavor of the leaves. The dandelion head can be eaten or used to make wine. The roots can be dried and ground to make a coffee like drink.

As a proviso, be sure to wash any foraged dandelion greens prior to consumption. Being they are so close to civilization, you would hate to have an after effect of Rover.

What do you think? Will you try the dandelions in your yard?

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