“Can we pick your dandelion leaves?”
Most would reply,
“You just want the leaves? You can take the whole plant if you like.”
“No, my grandmother only wants the leaves… thanks.”
My grandmother loved to add the leaves to pasta dishes and make a salad with them. Some of our neighbors were rumored to make dandelion wine, which they claimed was the secret to their good health.
“But, grandma everyone thinks we are crazy for picking dandelion leaves. They say they are just weeds.”
“Weeds are only plants that someone doesn’t know their use.”Is what my grandmother would explain to us. So, when I was approached about reviewing Hallie Bond and Stephen Topper’s new Adirondack Cookbook I didn’t hesitate. My family and I spend every summer up in the Adirondack Mountains and have always been fascinated by the history and the traditional food of the region.The Adirondack Cookbook is filled with seasonal recipes ranging from this Dandelion Salad to Pan-Fried Trout, to Maple Glazed Root Vegetables and great desserts like Strawberry Rhubarb pie.The recipes are great, but what makes this book really special are the side historical antidotes and pictures which really bring the recipes to life.A great cookbook to give to anyone who loves the outdoors and cooking: Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Graduation… your nature enthusiasts will not be disappointed. Order your copy today.
12 ounces dandelion greens
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
12 cherry tomatoes, cut in half
1 teaspoon finely chopped shallot
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste
Place the greens, red onion, and tomatoes in a large bowl.
Place the shallot, mustard, vinegar, oil, and a pinch each of salt and pepper in a small jar. Tighten the lid and shake vigorously. Pour the dressing over the greens, toss gently to coat and serve.
My Recipe Notes:
I used half dandelion greens and half leaf lettuce because my greens were very bitter. I also put a teaspoon of sugar into the dressing to make the salad more palatable to my kids. I put the dressing ingredients in a large measuring cup and whisked them instead of using a jar. The jar idea is great for storage.