I’ve cooked with a few strange roots in my time, but, before today, I’d never tried dandelion roots! My friend Sarah dug some up out of her garden and saved them for me, knowing me as she does! So I searched for a little encouragement online, and most of what I saw was about roasting up dandelion roots for a coffee substitute, or tincturing them in vinegar as a liver tonic. Both great things to do, that I haven’t tried yet! But I did see one mention of acting as if they were carrots. Which is exactly what I was hoping to see!

So as a little pick me up treat today in the middle of working, I made a lovely little stir fry with my homemade lemon parsnip sauerkraut, some green onion, garlic, and dandelion roots and leaves.

The roots and leaves were both really dirty, but just required a bit of scrubbing and rinsing, and pulling off a few dead leaves here and there. But the stir fry was delicious! I’m not sure I would have thought so some years back, before I started acclimatizing my palate to more  bitter flavors. But with a little balsamic vinegar, a lot of garlic, and the mellow, salty kraut for balance, the intensity was tempered in a really nice way!

I’ll be digging up more, for sure! And maybe the next time, I’ll share the pan full, instead of eating it all up myself!:)

Dandelion Root Stir Fry

2 tablespoons unrefined coconut oil

a few handfuls of dandelion roots and leaves

a few green onions

3-4 cloves garlic

1-2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

1/2-1 cup sauerkraut

salt to taste

Separate the dandelion roots from leaves. Pull off any sketchy leaves, and scrub the hell out of the roots! Chop it all up into pieces, but not so small that you can’t tell what’s what.  Sort out the roots and set them aside. Slice the garlic, don’t mince it, same with the green onion.

Melt the coconut oil in a 12″ cast iron skillet over medium heat. First add the dandelion roots to the pan. Cook them for a minute or two, then add everything else. Stir and cook, and taste as you go. Add salt only if you think it needs it. (I used a sprinkle, probably 1/4 teaspoon) When it’s hard to stop eating it, it’s time to turn off the pan!:)

It will be interesting to see how the flavor changes through the seasons. Anyone have any experience cooking with them at different times of the year?

What plants have you been meaning to try cooking and eating, that you haven’t tried yet?


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