Posts in preserves
Dandelion ginger jelly

To me, there is nothing sweeter than spotting the first dandelion of spring. That cheery little golden face peeking through the blades of grass or a sidewalk crack causes me to break into a slight giggle and my mind begins to wander back to childhood stories. Books and rhymes that carried me through summer days, building tiny houses in every nook and cranny I could declare suitable for fairies or school yard countdowns to those two cherished months of vacation. There is a spirit so unique to the dandelion that is hard for me to pass up.

These days I primarily turn to dandelion root and leaves to aid poor digestion or to support the liver when I feel it's needed . Spring is all about cleansing and adjusting your eating patterns to match the new growth of fruits, vegetables and herbs.  I like to think that dandelion chooses its blooming time to remind us of this every spring and help make our transition a bit easier.

While I can't speak for the medicinal qualities of this jelly (sugar is sugar after all), I will say that the energetics are superb.  It carries a powerful sense of whimsy, a taste of rich honey and a nod to the spiced bite of ginger.  Slather on fresh baked scones or pair with a thickly cut piece of toasted sourdough with goat cheese.


2 cups fresh dandelion blossoms

1 cup fresh ginger, peeled and chopped

4 cups water  

4 cups sugar  

2 tablespoons lemon juice  

1.75 ounces (1 box) pectin


Remove the blossoms from green sepals as they are bitter and will affect the sweetness of the jelly; it's ok if there is a bit of green in the mix however.  Prepare ginger and place in medium sized pot with 1 cup of dandelions and bring to boil.  Lessen heat, add remaining flowers and steep for 10-15 minutes.  Strain and measure remaining liquid into 3 cups.  Pour back into your pot and combine, sugar, lemon juice and pectin.  Bring to a boil and let bubble for about 2- 3 minutes. Remove from heat, skim foam off surface and pour into sterilized jars, leaving about 1/4 of an inch of air space.  Let liquid cool before sealing and place in fridge to set.

Don't be discouraged if your jelly doesn't set right away.  It can take up to 3 days for a jelly to shape and you can always heat it up again and add more pectin.  Will keep up to a month in the fridge or one year if processed with the traditional canning method

Makes 3 cups


Inspired by Cider Beans, Wild Greens And Dandelion Jelly by Joan E. Aller.