Fancy a culinary experience? Around us in the spring there are an abundance of ingredients that are rightly given to us for free – so why not learn how to use dandelion in other ways than in salads.
Blanching and additional masking of bitterness were used for a dish that actually has legendary status: creamy spinach puree, boiled egg on the eye and fried onions. Dandelion and fried onions are a combination of a popular dish called hindbeh in the Middle East, especially in Lebanon. The trick is to caramelize the onion very long and thoroughly, ensuring that the eater’s attention is focused entirely on its strong flavor, rather than the more bitter dandelion we mix in at the end. (Some even take the sweet taste of dandelion to the extreme and add maple syrup to it. We tried it, it’s not bad at all, but we don’t rely too much on imitation.)
In Hindbeh, dandelion loses some of its bitterness when blanched, but when mixed with onion and cream puree (for us the minus rule is minus on butter) and eggs au dish – there is no difference in the soothing pleasure, which the eater experiences with pure creamy spinach – or dandelion in such company.
As the base is a Middle Eastern recipe, we used cumin (not cumin), but as this is rare in Slovenian cuisines, nutmeg will also work well. It’s a wonderful, simple, everyday dish that you won’t have to go to the frozen spinach store for.
Dandelion with caramelized onions, mashed potatoes and egg
- for 8 good fists of cleaned dandelion (if it’s bigger, cut it)
- 1 kg of potatoes
- 50 days of butter (optional more)
- about 2 dl of milk
- 4 medium sized onions
- spoonful of fat
- 4 eggs
- salt, a pinch of nutmeg or oriental cumin
1. Peel the potatoes, cut them into cubes and boil them in salted water until tender.
2. Cut four onions into thin strips, shake them in a good frying pan with a little fat and simmer over medium heat for about half an hour to caramelize and become almost sweet. In the meantime, add a deciliter of hot water if necessary.
3. Meanwhile, boil water in a large saucepan and blanch the cleaned and cut dandelion, cut into small pieces, for a few minutes. Not a model not to dissolve. Drain and reserve.
4. When the potatoes are cooked, drain them and wait for as much water as possible to evaporate, then push it to one side of the bowl, add milk to the other (the amount also depends on the potato variety), and put sliced butter on the potatoes. Put back on the heat when the milk is boiling, mash everything, salt and set aside.
5. Take out half the onion from the pan, pour the blanched dandelion there and warm.
6. Finally, we tackle the eggs: kill one for each fat eater, salt quickly and cover even faster. While cooking, we only have a few minutes to prepare the plate: spread the potatoes, add the dandelion with the onion and the rest of the caramelized onions on top.
7. When a white epidermis forms on the yolk, divide the eggs into plates and serve immediately.
We also recommend: 3 slightly different fish recipes
Photos: Sonja Ravbar