Dandelion Honey – a Fabulous Vegan Alternative to Honey
Our plot was covered in a riot of glorious yellow dandelions. They were clean, organic and I didn’t want them to seed all over the vegetable beds. I love getting these unintended additional crops from the plot. We’ve had quite a few nettles and wild garlic so far this year, but that’s as far as our foraging has gone.
All of the instructions I saw said to pick out the dandelion petals and use these on their own or it would turn the colour a rather mushy brown and make the dandelion honey taste bitter. There was no way I was going to spend hours doing that, so I used the whole flower head and hoped for the best.
Astonishingly, it worked. The result was a wonderful dandelion honey that not only had the consistency of runny honey, but really tasted like it too. Despite leaving the green bits on, the bitter notes were faint and the colour was still golden rather than muddy. I’ve used it in several recipes already including this Figgy Bread. It works a treat in my easy vegan honey almond granola too. Now I know how simple it is, I shall be making this again next year.
18 April 2015 Update – I’ve just made dandelion honey for the 3rd year running and I’m as enamoured now as I was back in 2013.
Dandelion Honey – The Recipe
This is a poor man's honey made from dandelion flowers and sugar rather than made by bees, but although it may not be true honey, it really does look and more importantly, taste like honey. It's vegan too.
- 350 g dandelion heads - remove green parts if really keen
- 1 organic lemon - thinly sliced
- 1 litre water
- 750 g golden granulated sugar or thereabouts
- Simmer dandelion heads and lemon in water for 20 minutes in a covered pan. Pour into a glass bowl and cover. Leave to steep overnight.
- Pour through a sieve extracting the liquid by pressing down with a spoon to make about 750ml.
- Discard the flowers and simmer the liquid in a pan with a similar quantity of sugar for about 45 minutes or until the mixture becomes syrupy and drips slowly off a spoon.
- Pour into two warm sterilised glass jars and leave to cool.
Ideally, all green parts of the dandelion flower would be removed to avoid bitterness. I have never done that as it's just too time consuming and I'm happy with the result.
Requires foraging for dandelions and overnight soaking.
Makes 2 jars.
Adapted from Elizabeth's Kitchen Diary
Dandelion is a wonderful herb. I often dig up the roots to make dandelion coffee. The leaves of the wild dandelion, I find too bitter, but some are happy to use them as salad leaves. There are myriad health benefits, but it is best known as a cleansing spring tonic. I am submitting my dandelion honey to Karen’s Herbs on Saturday over at Lavender and Lovage. It’s hosted this month by Anneli at Delicieux.
As this dandelion nectar is not only made from scratch, but is also picked from scratch, I am submitting it to Javelin Warrior’s Made with Love Mondays.
Dandelions are in full season this month, so I’m entering this vegan honey into Simple and in Season with Ren Behan.
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