The humble dandelion is an extraordinary flower, and is in its prime during spring. Although this vibrant flower is popular amongst insects, did you know it can also be used as a salad plant or to make coffee?
The most versatile part of the dandelion is surely the root. It is used in beers and cordials, often alongside that of burdock, while if dry-roasted and ground it offers a surprisingly tasty alternative to coffee. This drink may be caffeine-free but might still wake you up at night as the dandelion often has a diuretic effect.
Here’s how to make easy homemade dandelion coffee.
You Will Need
- 20+ dandelion roots
- A sharp knife
- Pestle and mortar
- Cafetiere or coffee filter paper
Gather your roots; you will need to dig deep to extract the whole root. Make sure you don’t include dock roots.
Wash the roots clean of mud and grit and cut away the leaves. You can use any young, fresh leaves in salads.
Roast your roots for 45 minutes at 100°C (you can also cook them for 30 minutes at 200°C) until they are dark brown and dried out but not burnt. Let them cool.
Break the roots up with your fingers then grind them to powder with a pestle and mortar or coffee grinder.
Use in a cafetiere or with filter paper as you would normal coffee. Drink black or add a drop of milk to taste.
Illustrations by Enya Todd