Tuesday, May 12, 2009

A Seasonal Recipe

We try to do a lot of seasonal cooking-- partly because it means we can use fresher ingredients in our meals, but also because it gives a sort of rhythm to the year. We know when we're eating roasted chicken with sweet potatoes and apples, it's fall. Or when we're eating black bean soup, it's winter.

This recipe is from the Simply in Season Cookbook, which is currently hands down my favorite cookbook. I love it because it uses Dandelion greens, which (who knew?) are edible. I know that our yard has plenty dandelions for many a springtime salad, but you can also purchase these at a farmer's market or grocery store. It sounds like a crazy food combination, but it's delicious.

Dandelion Bacon Salad

1/4 cup lemon juice or vinegar
1/4 cup honey or sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
Blend in a small bowl.

1/2 cup evaporated milk
Stir in.

4 slices bacon
Fry in a Dutch oven or very large frypan and drain on paper towel. Remove all but 1 tablespoon bacon fat from pan. Crumble bacon and set aside.

1 tablespoon flour
Add to reserved bacon fat in frypan, heat, and stir until smooth. Slowly stir in the lemon mixture. Heat and stir until thickened. Turn off heat but leave pan on the burner.

8 cups dandelion greens (chopped)
Add to warm dressing and stir gently to coat. Garnish with bacon and chopped hard-cooked egg.

Variation: Substitute escarole, endive, or Boston lettuce. Other optional garnishes include red onion rings, mushrooms, or dried cherries.

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