Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Dandelion Wine anyone?

My brother made dandelion wine many years ago. Just once. You make it from the flowers. There are many other uses, medicinal and culinary, for the dandelion, from root to flower. The leaves are bitter, but make a nice addition to a salad. Here's some more info from naturalist Steve Brill.

24 comments:

m. heart said...

our photos go together nicely today ;)
some friends and i are hoping to go foraging at some point this weekend, for ramps and morels. two of us inexperienced, one not. maybe we need to add dandelion to the menu as well.

studio lolo said...

I actually love seeing dandelions en masse. Some homeowners spend their entire summers in such angst over them and how to banish them forever. I know they can ruin lawns, but still...get a grip folks.
I'm not sure I'd like them in my salad (which I eat nearky ever day.) I tend to take bitter things out. No radicchio for me!

I'm glad you're enjoying the spring :)

Lynn said...

Didn't I read a book once called Dandelion Wine? Or Dandelion something else? Was it Ray Bradbury? Oy, the memory begins to fade... Pretty picture.
I laid in a field of dandelions in Yellowstone last summer. I posted a photo of them at my eye level recently. Acres of them, tall, lush. Beautiful.

~Babs said...

I don't think I want to eat them, but I do love dandelions.Our backyard is full, but we don't care.
So interesting to follow the link and learn the origin of the name.
Jack calls them Wishing Flowers
(or fowwahs, in jackspeak.)

Debbie in CA : ) said...

The most beautiful sight I ever saw was a field of dandelions at sunset on Prince Edward Island. Like a million tiny lanterns, they lit the field. In that field I saw a poem written by God speaking of promise and hope -- something I badly needed just five days after burying my son. Dandelions grow freely in my gardens and we celebrate them with a wish and a gentle blow. Pure magic!

p.s.
The pita bread puffs up all on its own during baking. Really quite magical. Rachel did it all herself; I merely manned the oven and ooohed and ahhhhed. We stuffed the bread with lettuce leaves from our garden and a tofu salad -- SO DELICIOUS!! -- that Elizabeth created. A fine experiment all the way around.
: D

chewy said...

I'm told my Grandfather made dandelion wine in "the old days".

I have the book Dandelion Wine by Ray Bradbury. I'm holding it to read on vacation this summer.

Artist Unplugged said...

The photos are great today....I happen to like dandelions, always thought they were a curious and unique plant. Not sure I would want to eat them.....interesting post today!

Lynn said...

Thank you Chewy for renewing my faith in my memory with Bradbury's book info! I must have read it a good 40 or more years ago.

Cris, Artist in Oregon said...

Ah Dandelions...I love to see them too. We had a friend who named their dog Dandelion. I thought that was cute. Never had Dandelion wine tho.

marianne said...

I don´t want to get arrested like Steve.........
My deer love dandelions so when we take them out of the garden we give them to them.
They are cute but like most weed too much is too much.
Dandelion wine, would love to try it!

hug >M<

Kim said...

Suki, did you like the dandelion wine? I have never tasted it, but I hear my grandmother used to make it and she would also serve up the greens for dinner...another great-grandmother would make concord grape wine and enjoyed it a lot throughtou the year :)

When we were in England our neighbor lady told us about gathering gorse blossoms and making wine. If you know gorse, that was a brutal job with all those thorns and the blossoms so small...it would be easier to gather thistle blossoms.

Thanks for the memories, Suki!

soulbrush said...

i like all yellow bits in the garden, but wine, no thanks. and btw i do like your header so mcu, probably one of the best so far (or have i said this already?).

sukipoet said...

M. Heart have fun foraging this weekend. Sounds interesting.

Lolo, i have read that Americans tend to not like the bitter flavour of anything. However, a bit of bitters is good for us. Health wise.

Dandelion leaves are a bit of a diuretic.

Lynn I must have missed that/ Tall dandelions? I have never seen tall ones.

sukipoet said...

babs, i wish my herbal wasnt packed as it has a lot about dandelions in there--info which i dont commit to memory alas.

Debbie, thanks for the pita bread info. i'll have to check with my son and see how his turned out. that final stage of dandelions is rather magical.

chewy you'll have to let us all know how the book is.

sukipoet said...

cris, that is a cute name for a dog. I'll have to keep it in mind.

marianne, that's interesting that your deer love the dandelions! a good way to keep them away from the garden plants i guess.

Kim, i dont remember whether I liked the wine it was so long ago. i think making things this way (as with the gorse) is probably something a person does once for the experience than then just remembers it for the rest of their life rather than doing it every year. it is fun though to think of all the uses for plants such as the dandelion.

Mary said...

yay for dandelions! i have a whole yard full of them ;-)

my grandmother made dandelion wine every year and now an older friend of mine does. i never get to the leaves before the buds form--which is when they are supposed to be best and least bitter but each year i tell myself this will be the year. since the yard is awash in yellow i think i missed it again....

sukipoet said...

soulbrush, you can also make dandelion tea. thanks re: header.

hi mary, i didnt know i needed those early leaves. I picked a few leaves today and tossed them into a salad and found them fine.

chewy said...

(hic-cup) Please pash that bottle aroun' ag'n.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I have always wondered about dandelion wine. My Dad makes all sorts of wine but I don't remember him ever making dandelion wine. I must ask him to try it. I bet it is a pretty golden color. Is it any good?? I know you have to use the earliest and yougest leaves to have palatable dandilion leaves.

patti said...

I have never tried dandelion wine, tho it would probably be a good tonic.

When I was a child we would hold a dandelion flower up to our chin and if the light reflected back golden on our chin, it meant we liked butter :)

willow said...

For some reason, we have a bumper crop this year. Wine sounds like an excellent use for them! I've never tasted it, though.

sukipoet said...

chewy, you are so funny. ooops, sorry the bottle is empty.!

Lisa, it was so long ago I tasted the wine i dont remember. that's what happens when you have 63 years of memories behind you. :) that's really great that yr dad makes wine though. wonderful.

patti, i think we used to do that with buttercups but dandelions would work well too. thanks for the memories.

sukipoet said...

willow, there are a lot of dandelions out in the field here too this year. well, they are pretty just to look at, to my eye anyway. as a child my job was to dig them out of the lawn and i always vowed when i was grown up i would let them be.

Starlene said...

Dandelions are so much more beautiful and versatile than we give them credit for. They can literally save your liver, they can substitute for coffee in a pinch, their wilted greens make a fantastic saute, and a spring lawn without them looks unnatural, bare, and sterile. Yellow is cheerful!