Dandelion Tea RecipeNovember 13, 2015
Several large dandelion roots, ideally harvested in late summer to fall (but anytime you can get a good sized root up, save it and use it)
Scrub your dandelion roots until completely clean and free of all dirt and grit. Trim off any hairy little bits or anything squishy, rotten or otherwise damaged or questionable. If you’re having trouble getting your roots completely clean, you can use a vegetable peeler to remove the toughest outer layer.
(If you wish, skip the following step and begin roasting your roots right away.)
To Dry Your Roots: Chop roots into small pieces no larger than a couple of stacked nickles. Spread in a thin layer on a dehydrator tray. Insert into dehydrator set to 125°F for about an hour. After an hour, check to see if the root bits are completely dried. If not, continue drying in one hour increments until the pieces are hard and woody.
Once your dandelion harvest has been dried, you can place it in an airtight jar and store it until you are ready to roast for tea.
To Roast Your Tea: Preheat oven to 325°F. Spread dried or fresh roots in a single layer on a baking sheet. Insert into oven and roast for about 20 minutes, stirring half way through roasting. If you skipped dehydrating your roots, you may need to roast your roots for up to an hour, stirring every 10 minutes until the roots are both dried and slightly browned.
At this point, your roasted roots are ready to steep in hot water for tea. About 1/2 teaspoon to 1 cup boiling water should suffice, but adjust to taste!
Grinding Your Brew: If you prefer a powdered form that dissolves somewhat like coffee, place your roasted root bits into a dry grinder pitcher of a high powered blender. Turn it on variable/low and begin pulverizing your roasted pieces into a dust, increasing power as needed until all that remains is a pale brown dust without grit.
For a Darker Roast: If you like your dandelion tea with a lot of roasted flavor, pour your dust into a preheated cast iron skillet. Stir it gently over low heat until it transforms from a pale brown to a nutty brown. Be very careful to keep the heat low and stir frequently so your hard-won dandelion tea recipe doesn’t turn into burnt dust.
To Make the Perfect Dandy Cuppa: Fill a kettle with fresh water and bring to a boil. Meanwhile, add 1/2-1 teaspoon roasted dandelion root to your tea infuser. Pour boiling water over your dandelion root and allow it to infuse for about 3 minutes, or longer if you like a lot of flavor. (If you created powdered tea, just put it in your cup, pour water over it, stir.)
Add Some Flavor: If your cuppa dandelion tea is just a bit too bitter, try stirring in a teaspoon of honey, barley malt or pour in some coconut milk for creamy richness.