Cooking from Nature: Cream of Dandelion Soup ♥

What butter & cream do for 'weeds'My mother always said, "A weed is only a flower out of place". And that same feeling crept in while I was chopping dandelion greens for soup, knowing that I was cooking, well, weeds, and creating a rich, creamy soup that the French call 'creme de pissenlits'. And the 'flower' outcome was ever so elegant, worthy of a place on any royal table.

NEXT TIME I kept the sautéed carrots/onion aside when whizzing in the blender, thinking they'd add both texture and color to the finished soup. Next time I'll skip this step, the color doesn't show and complete smoothness is desirable. I also forgot the mustard in the first bowl - it definitely adds a spark that's important. Don't skip (or forget!) it!

NUTRITION NOTES I was feeling indulgent when making this and used the specified mix of milk and cream. To my taste, however, that made the soup heavier than delicious and I'd have been happy with all milk, maybe with a swirl of cream added to the bowls when serving. That said, the creaminess is completely lovely against the slightly bitter greens. And don't be put off by the idea of bitterness, dandelion taste is a slight bite -- peppery -- like arugula or broccoli raab.



FROM THE ARCHIVES Cooking with 'weeds' is fun! On Day 32, I tried poke, the greens in the ditty Poke Salad Annie and on Day 51, fiddlehead ferns. Check the recipes for leafy greens, all in the Recipe Box, of course.

GREAT FOOD BLOGS that enjoy DANDELION GREENS
Blog from Our Kitchen Feenugreek Greens & Potato
Fatfree Vegan Kitchen Curried Red Lentil Soup with Dandelion Greens
Something in Season What NOT to Do with Dandelion Greens



PRINT JUST A RECIPE! Now you can print a recipe without wasting ink and paper on the header and sidebar. Here's how.

NEVER MISS A RECIPE! Just enter your e-mail address in the box in the sidebar. Once you do, new recipes will be delivered, automatically, straight to your e-mail In Box.

Cream of Dandelion Soup

Hands-on time: 30 minutes
Time to table: 30 minutes
Makes about 3 cups

1/2 pound dandelion greens, washed well and drained well, roots trimmed, stems chopped small, leaves chopped
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup chicken broth

Prep the greens. In a large skillet, melt the butter til shimmery. Add the greens and stir to coat with fat. Let cook, stirring occasionally, til greens are beginning to soften. Add the stock and continue cooking til greens are cooked but still bright green.

2 tablespoons butter
2 carrots, diced small
1 small onion, diced
2 tablespoons flour
1/2 cup whole milk

1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard (don't skip this)
1/2 cup whole milk or cream
Salt and white pepper

Meanwhile, melt the butter in a saucepan til shimmery. Add the carrot and onion (I add the carrot first since it takes longer to cook) and let cook til softening but not browning. Stir in the flour, creating a heavy paste. A tablespoon at a time, stir in the milk, incorporating completely into the paste before adding more. Let cook for 2 - 3 minutes (this cooks out the floury taste) and until completely hot.

Pour the greens and the white sauce into a blender and process til smooth. Return to the saucepan. Stir in mustard and cream and season to taste. Heat through (don't let boil) and serve.



A Veggie Venture is home of the Veggie Evangelist Alanna Kellogg and vegetable inspiration from Asparagus to Zucchini. © Copyright 2007

10 comments:

Very nice! One of these days I'm going to get over the prejudice I have against eating the lawn and try this! I know it's simply a head thing.

Just for the record - "pisenlit" means wet the bed :0)

Nice idea to make soup out of dandelion greens, Alanna. Did you eat the flower garnish?

I was a little surprised to see that you use chicken stock rather than vegetable stock for the soup - not that there's anything wrong with chicken stock!

I must say that I haven't noticed dandelion greens at the vegetable market recently - but then we've suddenly become enamored with collard greens. And spring has only barely arrived here. There are very few green things growing so far.

Glenna, dandelion greens really are pretty good. Just make sure that they're young rather than old. Also ensure that they haven't been sprayed with chemicals (ie: don't eat dandelion greens picked from the side of the road). The older leaves tend to be quite bitter and tough.

-Elizabeth

P.S. Many thanks for linking to our recipe for Indian-style dandelion greens.
P.P.S. I gather that the "pisenlit" name comes because dandelion is used as a dieretic.

I wonder if my allergy to several weeds would be likely to make me allergic to dandelion greens?

Umm, I love the mustard touch! Must go well with the greens. Now if I could just figure out where to get them, other than the overgrown monsters in my yard....

Glenna ~ My 'lawn' in this case is Whole Foods ... even weeds are becoming commercialized.

Vitamin Lady ~ Ah yes.

Elizabeth ~ Naw, not the flower. It really DID come from my back yard and well, let's just say I have a dog and so ...

As for the chicken stock, yes, I use it nearly all the time just because for me it's easier, but it certainly isn't required. And A Veggie Venture is about vegetables but isn't vegetarian.

PS You're welcome!

Veggie Papa ~ Whoa, no idea. Probably not worth finding out ... so many other vegetables from which to choose. But if you like the idea of a 'bitter' soup, do think of arugula or radicchio.

Christine ~ Ah, yes, mustard is indeed a miracle ingredient! I couldn't believe the difference.

Looks like I need to go and visit my Grandma again:-)

Sounds delicous! Cooking from anture is brilliant and throws some real gems our way - I just made chutney meaning that the winter foraging season is beginning!

Have you used only early fir st dandelion greens, or ventured into later, older, more bitter greens?

Lovely recipe.

I suspect ... given that I last made this soup five years ago, :-) ... that the dandelion greens came from Whole Foods, not foraged. I do love bitter greens however, would you recommend them?

Post a Comment

Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe, whether a current recipe or a long-ago favorite. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. ~ Alanna