Thursday, April 14, 2011
More on First Harvests & Taraxicum
I've been nibbling Taraxicum officinalis - dandelion greens for days now, and adding them to my salads too. Yesterday, between the rainfall, I harvested some spring roots that were growing in the garden paths.
This morning, to chase the chill out of my little hut, I scraped the roots clean and roasted them in the oven until they were good and dry (at 325F for as long as it took - I wasn't watching the time keeper). I do a snap test and often remove the thiner roots from the oven before the others. I usually have a jar of roasted roots tucked away somewhere in my little hut.
I ground some in my blender and decocted (simmered) them for a while (more than 20 minutes, less than a full hour - again, I wasn't watching the time). I strained the brew and sipped this divine beverage as I do my tea and coffee and bourbon - straight up, neat, nothing to hide or mask the essence of this delicious brew. Some folks like to add milk or cream, honey or sugar, just as they would for coffee or tea.
Some folks prefer an infusion, but I like the decoction.
Dandelion root is, among other things, a source of vitamin A, C and D, and some of the Bs too. It also offers up minerals like iron, potassium and zinc and is honored as an antioxidant and as a tonic to digestion and liver function. It is a bountiful and generous ally.
This is just one of the many ways that that dandelion offers its blessings to us. Try it sometime - in any season - it's yummy and good for you!