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 How to Preserve Dandelion for Later Use

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PostSubject: How to Preserve Dandelion for Later Use   Mon Mar 21, 2011 3:49 am

How to Preserve Dandelion for Later Use
Freezing and Drying for Dandelion Preservation


May 20, 2009 Heather Schulte

Read more at Suite101: How to Preserve Dandelion for Later Use: Freezing and Drying for Dandelion Preservation http://www.suite101.com/content/how-to-preserve-dandelion-for-later-use-a119046

The aerial part of the dandelion is better preserved by freezing because it retains more of its medicinal value when frozen rather than dried.

The entire dandelion can be preserved and used at a later date. The most common use of dandelion is preparation of coffee or tea. You can harvest dandelion in the spring for use throughout the year.
Harvesting

The aerial part of the dandelion, or part which grows above the ground, include the leaves, stem, and flower. It is generally advised that these parts be gathered while the dandelion is small because the taste of the leaves and stem is less bitter at this stage. This is of more importance when the dandelion leaves and stem are to be used fresh for salads. While small, fresh dandelions are a spring treat; the larger dandelions can be collected and preserved for making teas at a later date.
Freezing

The aerial part of the dandelion is better preserved by freezing because it retains more of its medicinal value when frozen rather than dried. If you have a preference for the flowers, leaves or stem you can separate and preserve only these parts. However, it isn't necessary. The parts can be frozen together. Rinse the leaves and flowers well. Set them on a towel to dry. Tear them into small pieces prior to freezing if they are to be used for tea.

Flash freeze the dandelion pieces by lying them on a flat surface in the freezer for an hour. This allows the dandelion to freeze separately without sticking together. Place the frozen dandelion stems, leaves and flowers in a freezer safe storage container or bag. Label with the contents and date. Frozen dandelions are best used within 6 months.

For preparation of dandelion tea after freezing:

Pour 1 cup of boiling water over 1/8 cup dandelion pieces. Allow steeping for 15 minutes. Strain and enjoy.

Drying

Although dandelion root can be frozen, it is most commonly preserved by drying because the root is often used in its dried state for grinding and brewing coffee or tea. Soak and rinse the dandelion root well. Lie flat to dry in a window, dehydrator, or oven with a temperature setting below 125 degrees. When the dandelion root is dried place it in an air tight container label with the date and contents. Dried dandelion root is best used within 1 year.

To prepare dried dandelion root tea or coffee:

Grind the dried root in a coffee grinder. Use as you would coffee grounds or steep 1 teaspoon in a cup of hot water using a tea strainer for 15 minutes.

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