As part of Chilypeppers ‘social distancing schedule’ we are taking you on a plant tour this Tuesday exploring herbs and plants you can forage and cook with! Check out our facebook and Instagram for videos, recipes and more!
Dandelions are one of the things I love most about spring! They are so bright and beautiful, despite some people thinking of them as a weed or a pest! They in fact have so many medicinal benefits and are great for homemade teas, or (as I have only very recently discovered) making dandelion honey.
Dandelions are pretty easy to find, but always best to pick them in areas where they haven’t been weed on by dogs, and to pick from a range of places. Only take what you need as the bees and bugs love these so need to leave plenty for them!
When picking them you’ll just need the yellow heads. You need to be really careful to gently blow out any bugs in them so they don’t get harmed in the making of the ‘honey’.
Flowering dandelions are often surrounded by ‘clocks’, the beautiful seed heads that the plant turns into once it’s flowered. People may remember ‘telling the time’ as a child by blowing the seeds, or blowing them and seeing faeries fly past! My daughter loves blowing these and it’s a great way to replant whilst you’re out picking some!
2 cups fresh dandelion heads
2 slices of lemon
1.5 cups water
1.5 cups sugar
Shake or blow the flowers to remove any bugs
Place the water, lemon slices and dandelion flowers in a saucepan. Simmer with a lid on for 15 minutes and leave this to cool and infuse overnight.
The next day, strain out the flowers and lemon by pouring the liquid through a strainer or muslin cloth. Press down to make sure you get all of that dandelion juice out!
Weigh the liquid, and then weigh out the same amount of sugar. Put the liquid back in the pan and add the sugar. Stir and heat gently at first until the sugar is dissolved. Then bring it up to a gentle boil for approximately 15 minutes.
Pour into clean sterilised jars and put the lids on while it’s still hot. Enjoy!