Hey All! So I’m interrupting the Alaska-Picture-Extravaganza with a little lesson in pickling dandelion roots!
Why pickle dandelion roots, of all things, you might ask? Well, for one thing, they’re free! And, what can be better than eating something you harvested and preserved yourself? They also taste delicious once pickled.
Preparing the dandelion roots for canning:
The pickling brine that I use is a pretty standard one; the following measurements are for filling two quarts of dandelion roots (i know it doesn’t seem like that much in the pot, but remember that most of your jar will be filled and packed with roots!):
3 cups white vinegar, one cup water, 2 tablespoons of pickling salt, and a 1/2 cup sugar
Put it in a saucepan, and bring it to a boil. At the same time that I am doing this, I am sterilizing my jars and lids by letting them sit in boiling water for 10-15 minutes (I start heating the pot of water long before this though, since my huge pot takes forever to boil!)
Once the jars are sterilized, and before I pack in the dandelion roots, I fill them with these spices: (sorry I’m not very exact with the measurements, I just eyeball everything. If it is your first time, I do recommend finding a recipe online with exact measurements so you get an idea of how much to put in)
a couple whole cloves of garlic, a pinch of celery seed, 6 to 8 peppercorns, a pinch of cayenne or red chile pepper flakes, a pinch of mustard seeds, and some dill (preferably fresh)
So in the spices go, then the roots (which you really got to pack in there!), then the pickling brine. Fill up the jars to about a 1/4 inch from the rim, give the rims a quick wipe down (spices stuck to the rim can cause the lid to not seal properly), and throw on the lids…
Now that all of the hard stuff is over, you’re ready to let your jars sit in boiling water for a final 20 minutes or so…. and YAY, YOU’R DONE! … (after you remove them, don’t forget to let them sit on your counter overnight to give the lids a chance to “pop”, or seal)
THEY WILL TASTE DELICIOUS!!!