Foraging: Grandad Basils Dandelion Salad

We decided to have a different salad with our home-made pizza last night and decided to use what was around in it – that being Dandelions! Because of the heavy rainfall here we have lots growing around our house. Dandelions are good to forage and use in cooking – we used the young buds (less bitter) and the flower heads. We decided to just use the flower heads for extra texture in the salad but my grandfather always used to eat the stems too!

N.B. There is much debate over whether you can eat the stems of Dandelions (see self sufficiency websites for more details). Also it is advised if you are not used to eating Dandelions to not eat vast quantities the first time. Best thing to do is ask someone who knows or check a good forage guide.

Have included a quick recipe for our Mixed Dandelion Salad (good with a bit of cider vinegar or olive oil): for 2 – 3 people

-grate or peel 1 carrot into strips

-use a selection of young salad leaves

-a handful of almonds (could use sunflower seeds, pine nuts)

-5 radishes cut into thin slices

-handful of cherry tomatoes

-6 flower heads of dandelions (wash well and rip apart)

Mix all together and eat! : )

My Granddad Basil also had a recipe for a dandelion salad. He worked as part of a road gang repairing the public roads in Suffolk. Dad told me this was a recipe Granddad Basil often made in his lunch break and at other times too! Granddad Basil was also an avid beekeeper in his home life so as you will see from the recipe below Honey was used in tasty amounts!

Granddad Basils Dandelion Salad:

  • Collect a small hand-full of young Dandelion leaves – not the biggest of the plant but the smaller, younger ones on each plant
  • See if you can find some wild chives – if not garden chives or spring-onions will do.
  • In the kitchen-garden take a few leaves off a Cos or Romaine Lettuce (wash all these bits) then chop roughly.
  • When mixed together sprinkle over a little Vinegar & lemon juice
  • Dribble runny Honey all over (if no runny Honey then Cane Demerara Sugar will work)
  • Then a thick slice of Crusty bread wrapped round this to be munched down with Gusto!


2 thoughts on “Foraging: Grandad Basils Dandelion Salad

  1. Well my garden is never free of dandelions – might have a go but will take your advice of only eating a little initially. For some reason I have it at the back of my mind that dandelions are diuretic – is that true do you know?

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