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Celebrating Earth Day with Dandelions in the Kitchen

Happy Earth Day! What better way to celebrate in the kitchen than by baking something with the first and most important plant for pollinating bees...the humble Dandelion!

Not so humble after all, this nutritionally rich “weed” some of us want to spray and eliminate, offers bees a first taste of pollen before many other plants and trees are flowering. Dandelions provide hearty nutrients to our buzzing friends when they need it most—right after waking from their long and sleepy winter. The benefits of this sunshine flower to us humans is also great, from the roots to the petals, it has immune-boosting vitamins and minerals. The leaves can be bitter, but with the right salad dressing, or mixed in with pesto, they are a free resource of healthy Spring greens.

We decided to celebrate this week of Earth Day activities with the following Dandelion Cake (or cupcakes) for our Saturday, Live streamed Facebook class on 4/25/20 at 10am PST on the Tiny Onion Cooking School Facebook page. This is a free class for all to join in on (if you feel able to, donations are accepted via Paypal or Venmo links on the Classes page of this site) and we are excited to share how you can use these yellow blossoms in your cooking and baking LIVE with us! Videos are always posted later on the FB page, so you can catch it later.

Dandelion Cake

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened (coconut oil or other oil works fine also!)

1/2 cup sweetener of your choice

2 eggs, or flaxseed “eggs”

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3/4 cup freshly picked dandelion flower petals (green parts removed) if you don’t have access to Dandelions, go ahead and use any edible petals, roses, lavender, violets (not a 3/4 cup! More like a Tablespoon of these alternates...or throw some spinach or mint in for a green kick...or shredded carrots, zucchini.)

1 cup flour (or gluten-free all-purpose flour)

1 cup rolled oats

1 teaspoon cinnamon or other spice

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat the oven to 375° F and grease a 9 x 2-inch glass pie plate or 8x8 baking dish or muffin tins.

Combine the butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla in a medium bowl. Add the dandelion flowers and mix well. Set aside.

Combine the flour, oats, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl.

Slowly add the dry mixture to the wet mixture while stirring.

Press the batter into the greased baking dish.

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool.

This is great with a simple glaze or drizzle of honey, or a frosting of your choice!

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