Fried Dandelions Are an Appalachian Specialty

They aren't just darned weeds.

It's something we can't escape and bound to happen on everyone's lawn. Pesky weeds and other plants seem to take over and have a mind of their own, especially during the springtime. It's easy to just get rid of them and hopefully for good.

However, it turns out there are plenty of wild edible weeds that just might be growing in your yard right now. Bet you never thought you could enjoy those suckers, huh?

One edible weed in particular that we are all familiar with is dandelion blossoms. Those yellow flowers that eventually turn into fuzzy, white seeds were every little kid's dream. I remember thinking they were the prettiest flowers as a kid. Sure, you can eat the dandelion greens in a number of recipes, but you can also enjoy the dandelion flowers in a crispy, fried treat.

Let me introduce to you fried dandelion flowers. Dredged in seasoned batter and fried until golden brown, this recipe gives those weeds you once thought were a pain in the you know what to actually having a purpose! Dandelion flowers are also rich in nutrients like vitamin A & C, protein, calcium, and iron. On top of that, they help aid digestion, keep skin healthy, and boost your immune system. Pretty cool for a pesky weed, right?

However, there's one thing to keep in mind before you start picking your flowers for fried dandelion blossoms. You want to make sure they have not been sprayed by pesticides, herbicides, or your family dog. Once you can be sure that your yellow flowers are free from those things, you can start picking and then whip out your fry pan and make these delicious pan-fried fritters.

It all starts with picking your dandelion blossoms. Make sure the stem is removed as well as any green parts, which gives a bitter taste. Gently rinse off your flowers under cool water and pat dry with paper towels. Set them aside while you make the batter. You can save the dandelion leaves for another appetizer. Heck, if you have an abundance of dandelions, make some dandelion wine!

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, kosher salt, and black pepper. Feel free to season this up as much as you like. You can add fresh or dried herbs like oregano, parsley, basil or seasoned salts and mixes. Also, if you like the flavor of cornmeal, try substituting all-purpose flour for cornmeal or even breadcrumbs.

Next, crack a few large eggs in a small bowl and mix with a fork or whisk. Dip each dandelion flower in the egg mixture and then toss in the seasoned flour or cornmeal mixture. Set aside while you heat up your cast iron skillet.

Fry the dredged yellow flowers working in small batches in either melted butter or oil until crispy and golden brown. This takes about 5 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and place the deep fried dandelion flowers on to a plate lined with paper towels to remove the excess oil.

That's all it takes to whip up this yummy, Appalachian specialty! All you need for these dandelion fritters is a dipping sauce.

Farberware Classic Series 11 Quart Stockpot with Glass Lid