i have a general rule about my participation in yard work (that i recently ignored at my own peril) and it is thus: if i can’t eat it, i don’t want to spend time on it.
now, those of you who don’t know me well might be tempted to think that this means i have a bunch of lovely raised beds out in the yard, sprouting up all kinds of delicious vegetables, perhaps a few blueberry bushes lining the edge of the yard, and then an apple or pear tree to provide some shade in addition to tasty baked goods come fall.
aaaaand you’d be totally wrong. (sorry) i *wish* i had some berry-producing blueberry bushes (they’re low maintenance, right? i have no idea about these things…) and sometimes i even wish that i wanted to have a vegetable garden, until i remember that such a thing would involve dirt, bugs, and time spent in the sun. all set thanks.
what i do have is a total of 4 small house plants (two are edible herbs and the other two were gifts…). and a LOT of dandelions. like, a lot a lot.
in an effort to tip the balance in favor of having more edible plants, i decided it would be easier to just expand what plants i consider edible, rather than try to tame the borderline-chaos that is our yard.
and that is how this dandelion greens, figs, toasted hazelnuts, and bacon salad came to be. well, my lackadaisical attitude towards our yard combined with a yummy salad i had at a restaurant recently.
i basically took all of the tasty bits from that salad (bacon, toasted hazelnuts, and crunchy shaved brussels sprouts) and replaced arugula with dandelion greens and dried cranberries with some dried calimyrna figs the nice folks over at valley fig growers sent me.
oh! and i did do a quick google search to confirm that dandelion greens are edible, assuming you get them from somewhere you can be sure they haven’t been sprayed with terrible chemicals or used as a dog bathroom (like my backyard – a quick glance makes it pretty clear we’re chemical free).
my search also revealed that we might pass for trendy: bon appétit recently ran a story about eating dandelions. i feel so fancy. (and so thrifty, since vendors at the farmers’ market are selling bunches of dandelions for $3 and i’m just popping out the back door and grabbing a handful of weeds. hooray urban foraging!)
don’t worry though, i’m not going to get too trendy, since i’m pretty sure you can’t be an urban homesteader if you refuse to engage with plants that don’t grow on their own and have a borderline-pathological fear of ticks and the sun…
valley fig growers kindly sent me some of their figs to try. all opinions in this (and every) post are my own.
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