I have always felt such an affinity for Dandelions. Where many see lowly weeds, I see necklaces and fresh salad greens! When I was a child playing in my dads gardens, one of the happiest signs of spring were when those bright golden , pollen laden blooms would appear all over our yard as if by magic! I couldn’t wait to get outside and play with them! That lovely golden pollen always tickled my nose and made me sneeze, but I loved it anyhow!
“Who put them there?” was always my question , because I knew that my father hadn’t planted them and he was always trying to get rid of them. I loved them…so much abundance and so much joy to be found in those smiling yellow faces. I could never understand why he’d get so upset at my favorite pastime, which was to blow the seeds everywhere that I could, flower after flower. My friends and I made long necklaces and head dresses and pretended that we were fairy queens! I cried every time he mowed them down. This ritual went on for years until my dad discovered Chem lawn who came to spray everything and completely ruin my fun. It took me years but I finally convinced him to go au natural in the gardens again and the dandelions returned with a vengeance as if to say….” Ha…you thought we were gone but we’ve been here for the whole time just waiting!”. I was beside myself with joy the first time that I saw them reappear. Dandelions have an absolutely unabashed generosity about them ! Pick only one and the next day three will magically appear it its place. I still don’t know how they do that and that’s why I absolutely love them!
Dandelion or as the French call it Dent de Lion or pissenlit (the English call it Piss in Bed!) is one powerhouse of a springtime tonic. I love to use the leaves in salad, their bitterness is delightful on the tongue when countered by a salty dressing of olive oil, onion, egg and a bit of crispy bacon. Dandelions have a marvelous diuretic quality. I use them (either the leaves or the tincture all of the time when I’m retaining too much water weight during specific times of the month and when eaten as part of a springtime liver flush they are unsurpassed for their cleansing and laxative qualities. I’ve even used a homemade tincture of fresh Dandelion root during a time when my breasts were very sore and cystic.
It was several months later that I realized what a spectacular woman’s ally this special plant truly is. After only a few months of taking the tincture everyday, my breasts became very smooth and the skin supple. Tincture of fresh Dandelion root or the leaves eaten regularly are really good for removing inner blockages of many kinds. Dandelion leaves eaten regularly as part of a springtime salad are marvelous for the digestion and when I still lived on my farm I used to make a simple wine of infused Dandelion leaves and flowers. Dandelion wine is a delicious and very pretty aperitif. Making it is simple. Just take a bottle of really good organic Riesling or viognier. Open it and decant it into a large glass jar filled with freshly washed Dandelion leaves and flowers. Add a bit of raw honey, shake well and let the whole thing infuse for about a week. Strain and decant wine back into the bottle which you’ve saved and chill it for another day or two. Serve this lovely springtime digestif in lovely little wine glasses before dinner with wheat crackers and a crock of fromage blanc to which you’ve added a bit of lemon rind and just a touch of honey and salt. This spring as the lively yellow flowers begin to grace your lawns remember that Dandelions could be your new best friend! They are an acquired taste to be sure, but once you make their acquaintance you’ll never want to be without them!
Now drift through the sky on a cottony tipped seed over to Roxana Villas Illuminated Journal and see what she has to share about Dandelion: The Fragrance!
Picture courtesy of :http://www.english-country-garden.com