Dandelion Recipes Part 2

bee-1085315_1280-trimDandelion Blossom Syrup  

This is a traditional recipe passed down from the old world Europeans.  I use it as a substitute for honey in any recipe that I’m trying to make wild.

1 quart dandelion flowers
1 quart (4 cups) water
4 cups sugar
½ lemon or orange (organic if possible) chopped, peel and all

Note: The citrus is optional, it will give the syrup an orangey or lemony flavor.  If you want the pure dandelion flavor, you can skip the citrus.  I make it both ways each year.

1. Put blossoms and water in a pot. 
2. Bring just to a boil, turn off heat, cover, and let sit overnight.
3. The next day, strain and press liquid out of spent flowers.  
4. Add sugar and sliced citrus and heat slowly, stirring now and again, for several hours or until reduced to a thick, honey-like syrup.
5. Can in half-pint or 1 pint jars.  

This recipe makes a little more than 1 pint.  I usually triple or quadruple this, and I make more than one batch when the blossoms are in season to have enough for the year.  The syrup makes great Christmas presents, so make plenty!

Dandelion Baklava

This recipe involves using fillo leaves, which are extremely thin sheets of pastry dough, usually sold frozen in long thin boxes.  Fillo can be fussy to work with but the results are so worth it!  It’s actually a lot more forgiving than it seems, so don’t be afraid to try it!

1/2 box fillo leaves
1 stick butter
2 cups finely chopped hickory nuts (try walnuts or pecans)
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
3/4 cup Dandelion Blossom syrup

1. Combine nuts with sugar and spices
2. Melt butter
3. Layer 8 sheets fillo into a buttered 9×13 pan, brushing every other sheet with butter using a pastry brush.
4. Sprinkle evenly with 1/2 of the nut mixture.
5. Layer 8 more sheets. Sprinkle the rest of the nut mixture.
6. Layer the rest of the fillo sheets, brush the top layer generously with butter.
7.  Cut carefully into 30 squares (6×5) with a sharp knife before baking.
8. Bake at 375 for about one-half hour.  when slightly browned, remove from oven.  
9. Pour room temperature Dandelion Blossom syrup over the hot baklava, while it is still piping hot.  

Note: Fillo leaves used to come with two packages per box, sized for 9×13 pans.  Lately it’s been all in one package and sized much bigger, so it is necessary to cut the stack of leaves in half before beginning. Half-sheets fit the 9×13 pans nicely.  

Dandelion Blossom Cake

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2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1½ tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt
1 cup sugar
1 cup Dandelion Blossom Syrup
1½ cups oil
4 eggs
2 cups Dandelion blossom petals
1 can crushed pineapple
½ cup walnuts
½ cup coconut

1.  Sift together dry ingredients.
2.  In separate bowl, beat sugar, dandelion syrup, oil and eggs

to

gether until creamy.
3.  Add pineapple, walnuts, and coconut, and mix well.
4.  Stir dry ingredients into the mixture until well blended.
5.  Pour batter into a greased, 9×13 cake pan and bake at 350° for about 40 minutes.

Frosting
1  8-oz package cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup powdered sugar
1 or 2 Tbsp milk

Dandelion Blossom Pancakes

1 cup white flour
1 cup cornmeal
1 tsp salt
2 tsp baking powder
2 eggs
¼ cup oil
½ cup Dandelion Blossom syrup or honey
2 cups milk
1 cup Dandelion blossom petals

1. Mix dry ingredients first.
2. Add wet ingredients and mix together thoroughly  (Note: the secret of keeping pancake batter from getting lumpy is to be sure to add all the wet ingredients before mixing.)  
3.  Adjust consistency by adding a little more milk or a little more flour if it’s too thick or thin.  Pancake batter should be thin enough to pour, but not runny.
4.  Cook on oiled grill.
5.  Top with butter and Dandelion Blossom syrup.

Dandelion Cornbread

1 cup cornmeal
1 cup white flour
2 tsp baking powder
¾ tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 large eggs
½ cup Dandelion Blossom syrup (or honey)
¼ cup oil or butter
1 cup milk (buttermilk is best!)
1 cup Dandelion blossom petals

1.  Mix dry ingredients together.
2.   Add all the rest of the ingredients and blend until smooth.
3.  Pour batter into a 9×9 pan, or 10-inch cast iron frying pan.
4.  Bake at 375° for 25 minutes.
5.  Serve hot with butter and Dandelion Blossom syrup.

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