Friday, April 26, 2013

Fried Dandelion Blossoms - From Mother Nature's Grocery Store

Did you know that you can eat dandelions?  Did you know that dandelions are good for you?  We use the green in fresh salads and we fry up the blossoms.  Fried dandelion blossoms is something that my grandmother made for us as a special treat.  We loved them and always gobbled them up just as soon as she plucked them out of the oil.  Now, this time of year, my own kids are clamoring for me to fix them fried dandelion blossoms.  If you have never tried them, you should.
Before diving into the recipe, I want to make a special note, Never used dandelions that have been sprayed with pesticide or herbicide or fertilizer (although I don't know anyone who fertilizes dandelions, you can never be too safe).
Here is how you make these special treats:
2 quarts of cool water
4 cups of dandelion blossoms
1 palm full of salt
3 eggs
1/4 cup of milk
2 cups of flour
Canola oil - enough to submerse the blossoms, the amount will depend upon the size of pan you use

 First, send your kiddos out to pick dandelion blossoms.  Chances are they will pick too many, but in this recipe, you only need about 4 cups.
 Each blossom needs to have the stem completely removed.  Any remaining stem will cause a very bitter blossom.  Just pinch them off.
 Toss the blossoms into a large bowl with about 2 quarts of cool water and a handful of salt tossed in.  Give the blossoms a bit of a swish with your hand to knock off any dirt and bugs.  Soak the blossoms for at least 1 hour, but not more than 2.  This is going to completely remove any bugs from deep inside the flower and kill them.
 Scoop the blossoms out of the bowl, leaving the dirt in the bottom and move the blossoms over to a strainer and give them a good rinse.  Shake out as much excess moisture as possible and leave them to strain while you prepare your breading and egg wash.  You should also preheat your canola oil.  I fry mine up on medium heat.
 In one bowl whisk together 3 eggs and 1/4 cup of milk.  In another bowl, measure out about 2 cups of flour.
 Toss a handful of blossoms into the egg wash.
 Then, dredge in the flour, shaking off excess flour.
 Carefully place the blossoms into the hot oil and allow them to fry until the bottom side is golden brown.
 Flip the blossoms with a slotted spoon and remove when the entire blossom is golden brown.
 With a slotted spoon, remove from the hot oil and place on a plate with a dry paper towel.  Allow the paper towel to soak up the excess oil.  Lightly salt, to taste, each batch as soon as it is placed on the towel.
Dandelions are best served up with your favorite summertime sandwich and fruit!

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