Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Recipe: Eggs with dandelion greens and wild onions

I've wanted to forage for a long time. The problem is, in the suburbs, just about everywhere is contaminated with something. The landscaped areas are sprayed, and the wild areas are at risk for runoff. But now that I have my own yard, I've been foraging by learning to identify the plants right outside my door. I know they're not sprayed, and I can return to the same spot day after day and get more.

I picked two of the very easiest plants to identify: dandelions and onion grass. I'm sure you can recognize a dandelion, and you're a rare person if there are none in your yard. As for onion grass or wild onion, you probably have some if you've ever unaccountably smelled onions while mowing the lawn. It looks just like chives, with a tiny bulb at the bottom. Bruise it and sniff -- if it smells like onions, you've got the right plant. If not, it might be lily of the valley -- don't eat it!

I got some young dandelion greens (the younger, the better) and onion grass, and washed and chopped both. I put them in a saucepan with about a tablespoon of cider vinegar and cooked them on medium heat for about three minutes, at which point the vinegar had almost all evaporated. I tossed in a hunk of beef tallow (a tablespoon of butter would work just as well) and sauteed the greens for another three minutes or so. Then I added two eggs, scrambled them till they were done, and ate the whole thing with salt and pepper.

They were delicious. I've occasionally tasted dandelion greens and found them just too bitter, but the bitterness had almost all disappeared. There was just the faintest bite left, mixed with sourness from the vinegar. It might have been even better with parmesan cheese.

In any event, it was delicious enough that I scarfed them down and rushed to the computer to rave about it! Like all of my most delicious creations, there was no time for any pictures. But I heartily recommend this dish ... in ten minutes I foraged and ate a delicious lunch!


Sarah Faith said...

we have so much onion grass. teh kids eat it and eat the onion bulbs and i have to say they reek from across the HOUSE when they do... once I went in the bathroom where one had just eaten onion grass and nearly fainted b/c it was boxed in.
is it less pungeant, cooked? lol

Sheila said...

Well, I love onions, so I wouldn't have been fainting from their smell raw, either. But yes, like regular onions, they are milder cooked.

Sheila said...

Of course you could easily make this without the onions. It just wouldn't have that oniony goodness ... which I don't think you'd mind. ;)

Heather said...

Oh my yum! Perfect simplicity!

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