The dandelion is a very powerful diuretic and one of the the best natural sources of potassium. All parts of the dandelion is edible. The root is dried and used in tonics and drinks. Some people use this as a coffee substitute. The leaves can be used in salads or soups. The yellow blossoms can be made into wine, jelly, and fried and eaten as a snack. There are so many uses for this herb. It has also been thought that the dandelion was one of the bitter herbs mentioned in the Bible. If you pick the leaves at the wrong time they are bitter. To use the leaves you want to pick fresh young leaves. When the plant gets older and bigger the leaves turn bitter. One of my favorite things to make out of dandelions is jelly. It is a pretty golden yellow color and tastes like a very mild honey. It is great on biscuits and homemade bread and rolls. Here is the process of making dandelion jelly.
Here is the recipe for the jelly. Go pick you fields of yellow and enjoy the benefits!!
1 quart of dandelion petals
1 quart of water
Boil together for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and cover the pan. Let steep for 30 minutes. Drain juice.
2 1/2 cups dandelion juice
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 pkg powdered pectin
4 1/2 cups sugar
Bring dandelion juice, lemon juice, and pectin to a boil stirring constantly. Add sugar. Stir until it comes to a boil. Cook and stir for 1 minute. Skim off foam and ladle into jars. Adjust lids and process in a boiling water bath for 5 minutes. Yield: 6 8 oz jars of jelly