[Sca-cooks] Newbie question about dandelions

S CLEMENGER sclemenger at msn.com
Mon Mar 10 21:51:48 PDT 2008

They're known in both, IIRC, but I don't know, off-hand, if they started in the Old World and later spread to this continent, or if they were just everywhere, like columbines.  Certainly were known in period, though.
They're a very useful plant.  If you're going to eat the leaves (and they make tasty greens, cooked or raw!), be sure to get them *young!* I've served them as part of a "spring greens" salad from Apicius at a Roman-themed spring event, many years ago.
The flower heads (minus the green bit that holds the petals together) can indeed be used to make a tasty, light wine.  Since the flower heads are edible, you could probably also use them in/on foods, although I don't know how well they'd color things.
Friends and I have also used the flower heads for a natural dye--you get a decent light/bright yellow with them on protein fibers, as long as you remember to mordant first.
I've heard you can also dry and roast and grind the roots for a beverage with some medicinal qualities, but my brain is fried, and nothing much is coming through from the auld and dusty files at the back of my head.

  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Liz Wilson<mailto:ewilson618 at tx.rr.com> 
  To: sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org<mailto:sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org> 
  Sent: Monday, March 10, 2008 9:54 PM
  Subject: [Sca-cooks] Newbie question about dandelions

  Ok, don't laugh, but are dandelions old world or new world food, and does anyone have any recipes or know how they were used?  How did they differ from the common yard dandelions of today?  I have heard of eating them as greens and making wine from them but no other uses.  Is it worth trying with our current crop in the backyard or is this just an exercise in futility?

  Christianna (the newbie one from Texas who mostly just lurks) 
  Sca-cooks mailing list
  Sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org<mailto:Sca-cooks at lists.ansteorra.org>

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