Northern Bushcraft
  • all parts of plant are edible raw.
  • young leaves or those growing where there is less/no sunlight are the least bitter.
  • older leaves are best when boiled in 2 changes of water and/or with midveins removed.
  • roots are best when collected in spring/autumn, peeled, sliced and cooked in 2 changes of water with pinch of baking soda.
  • roots can be roasted as coffee substitute.
  • unopened flower buds can be eaten raw or used in cooking.
  • seeds with the parachute removed can be eaten or ground into flower.
  • a serving of dandelion greens contains the same amount of calcium as half a cup of milk.
  • is a good source of potassium, vitamin A, and vitamin C.
  • grows in a wide range of terrain, look for dandelion in disturbed/cultivated soil areas.
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Field Notes
The dandelion might be the most plentiful and easy to find edible plant in urban areas, if you can be assured that they are free from pesticide. Salsify and Sow thistle, which are also edible, are sometimes mistakenly called dandelions. Young leaves, flowers, and the unopened flower buds of dandelions are excellent for cooking. The older leaves, especially after the plant has flowered, are too bitter to enjoy raw, but are satisfactory after a brief boiling with a change of water or two. Soy sauce compliments the natural taste of dandelion leaves quite well. The flower buds and flowers are much less bitter than the leaves, and are well suited for stir frying. The best part of cooking with dandelions is having a seemingly endless supply in the back yard. It's easy to see why dandelions were brought over as a foodcrop by settlers on the Mayflower in 1620.
Related topics: Edible Plants of BC - Edible Berries of BC - Edible Mushrooms of BC - Edible Seashore of PNW
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