Dandelion (aka Taraxacum officinale)
Today we are cooking tempura battered dandelions, a real Springtime treat. Famous as a garden weed, this yellow headed plant isn’t often noted for its fantastic healing properties but dandelions are a real gift from nature.
They are a natural anti-inflammatory, used in skincare to treat anti-aging and has a long history as a medicinal plant since the 11th century. Dandelions can provide a welcome boost to your immune system in Springtime. All parts of this special weed are edible. Today the root is used as a trendy substitute for coffee.
Try this delicious recipe to add some freshly washed dandelions to your diet.
Tempura Battered Dandelions
What you will need: Freshly Foraged Dandelion heads (aim for between 15 – 20).
- 1 Large Egg
- 125 g Plain Flour
- 250 ml/1 Cup of very cold water or sparkling water
Aioli Dipping Sauce
- 2 Egg yolks
- 4 Tablespoons of White wine vinegar
- 120 ml Olive oil
- 3 Cloves of Garlic
- 1 lemon juiced
- 2 teaspoons of sea salt
Prepare the batter. The key here is making sure that the water is very cold. Leave it in the freezer for a 2 or 3 minutes if you want. Add the egg to the water, now gently mix in the flour with a spoon until smooth.Heat the vegetable oil in a wok, deep saucepan or deep fat fryer to 180’c.
Prepare the Dandelion heads by gently washing them, removing the stem and leaves. Pat them dry before using them.
Before you start cooking your flowers, prepare your aioli sauce. Mince the garlic, mix the egg yolk and vinegar, whisk in the olive oil, add lemon juice and season with salt and pepper.
Now is the exciting part. Heat a large portion of vegetable oil in a pot or wok. (Note: Never leave a pan of oil heating alone. Stay with the cooker until you are finished). Sprinkle your dandelion heads with flower, dip into the batter and drop into the hot oil for 2 minutes until they are golden brown. Only do a handful each time.
Sit back and enjoy this super weed snack.
To start planning your foraging adventures you can download a copy of our Foraging Workbook Planner here.
If you have any recipe tips or foraging knowledge to share we would love to hear from you.