We have had access to dandelions since March but it is late spring here when the meadows in the higher elevations in the Sequoia National Forest are bursting with them. The Sequoia National Forest office allows us to harvest them for our own consumption and so we do. We leave plenty behind for the wild life and plenty for the flowers to reseed and perpetuate themselves. The fact is that they are so abundant that we would have to crawl around these meadows picking them for weeks to threaten their survival. As it is, we hit a meadow a couple of times in the spring and use the dandies for various projects. Every season I get a bit more ambitious and try something new. These muffins were that ambitious project this year, a project perfect for those of you with a carpet of dandelions in your front yard.
This is a good, interesting muffin that allows you to taste the dandelion petal itself. The flavor of the petal is subtle but interesting. It is difficult to describe. Perhaps it tastes a bit like “a meadow.” It does taste much like its very subtle fragrance. The flavor is subtle enough that you are likely going to make this muffin only once. Don’t get me wrong: It’s a good muffin. It just happens to be a lot of work and if you’ve already had the experience, I doubt many of us will put in the work for the experience a second time.
The starting point for this recipe was this dandelion bread recipe at Fat of the Land http://fat-of-the-land.blogspot.com/2008/04/dandy-muffins-and-bread.html The only real difference in the recipe here is that I doubled the dandelion blossoms and added a bit of lemon extract. Lemon is a good complementary flavor to dandelion but use a light hand. It’s easy to end up with a lemon muffin.
What makes this recipe difficult is that it uses dandelion petals only. Once you harvest your flowers, you’ll want to plant yourself in front of a decent movie and tediously pick apart the dandelion flowers. I pinch the base lengthwise, open it up, and remove the petals. Any petals left behind just get discarded with the rest of the flower and get turned into pickles or tea. Otherwise, this recipe is a straight-forward quick bread recipe.
Dandelion Muffin Ingredients
- 2 cups flour (Regular white flour will highlight the dandelion flavor best but a fresh ground whole grain flour would make a good muffin too.)
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 cups dandelion petals
- 1 egg
- 1 1/2 cups milk
- 1/4 teaspoon lemon extract
- 1/4 cup melted butter
- 4 tbsp honey
Dandelion Muffin Steps
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Mix together the dry ingredients: flour, baking powder, salt, and dandelion petals.
- Whip the egg and milk together in a separate bowl. Add the lemon extract.
- In yet a third bowl, mix the melted butter and honey, allowing the honey to dissolve in the warm butter.
- Add the butter and honey mixture to the egg and milk mixture. Slowly add the dry ingredient mixture to this new mixture.
- Taste the batter. Add a touch more lemon extract if you desire.
- Spoon the batter into greased muffin tins, filling the tins about 2/3 full.
- Bake at 375 degrees for about 20 minutes, or until done. When done, the muffins will be slightly browned. To check for donness, simply pierce a muffin with a fork. It is done if the fork comes out clean. If the fork has batter on it, place the muffins in the oven for a couple of minutes and check again.
These muffins are not overly sweet and are great with a bit of added butter and enjoyed with a cup of tea.