Thursday, October 30

Dandelion, Persimmon, and Medjool Date Salad

dandelion, persimmon, and Medjool date salad

Do have any weeding to do? If so, you may want to keep the dandelion greens for your next salad. No kidding. Look at the definition of dandelion greens: edible leaves of the common dandelion collected from the wild; used in salads and in making wine.

People have eaten dandelions for centuries. The name comes from the French, who called them dent de lion, or "lion's teeth" because of their sharp, serrated leaves. In fact, all parts of the dandelion are edible, though most people prefer the leaves to the flower and the root. You can harvest dandelions in your yard, especially during the spring and fall when they're at their tastiest, but I buy mine at the supermarket.


Dandelion greens have a bitter flavor similar to chicory, endive, and escarole and are best when paired with sweet or salty foods. Try them raw in salads or cooked; they can be boiled, steamed, or lightly sauteed. Also, season them generously with salt, which reduces the bitterness.

If, like me, you like a "bite" in your salad greens, then you won't be disappointed with this Dandelion, Persimmon, and Medjool date Salad. My inspiration came from a particularly productive trip to the farmers' market on Sunday morning where I purchased crisp Fuyu persimmons and succulent Medjool dates. The sweet fruit acts as a foil to the bitter salad greens which are drizzled with a deliciously tangy vinaigrette made of honey, Dijon mustard, orange juice, and fresh rosemary.

Now, just think of all the money you'll save by not having to purchase any more weed killer.

Dandelion, Persimmon, and Medjool Date Salad
Makes 4 servings
Print recipe only here.

1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon grainy Dijon mustard (or regular Dijon plus 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds)
1 teaspoon honey
2 tablespoons orange juice
1/2 teaspoon orange zest
1/2 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
salt and pepper, to taste

2 bunches dandelion greens, washed, stems removed, and chopped**
2 small Fuyu persimmons, each cut into 6 wedges
4 Medjool dates, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons lightly toasted pecans, sliced lengthwise

For the vinaigrette, whisk all ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.

In a large bowl, add the dandelions and persimmons. Pour half of the vinaigrette and toss until coated. Divide evenly among four plates. Add dates and pecans to each plate. Drizzle with the remaining vinaigrette.

**Dandelion greens are available at most supermarkets as well as organic specialty markets. Bitter greens such as chicory, frisee, and endive make good substitutes.

You might also like:

Watercress, Seckel Pear, and Brie Salad

Bulgur Salad with Chickpeas, Cranberries, and Toasted Almonds

Broccoli Rabe (Rapini) on Crispy Polenta with a
Rosemary-Goat Cheese Sauce

This week Kalyn of Kalyn's Kitchen is celebrating her third year anniversary of Weekend Herb Blogging. In fact, it will be Kalyn's last official hosting since she is passing the torch to Haalo of Cook (almost) Anything At Least Once. Thank you, Kalyn, for your time, dedication, and enthusiasm.

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Kalyn Denny said...

Hi Susan,
This does sound wonderful. I try hard to not get dandelions in my lawn, but I love to eat them when the come from the supermarket. The combination of persimmons and dates with the flavor of dandelion greens sounds great to me.

La Cuisine d'Helene said...

Hi Susan,
I don't know where your get all these great ideas for your recipes. They always look so fresh and good.

Kristen said...

Please note that you do not want to eat dandelions from any yard that has been sprayed with weed killer or other noxious chemicals, so don't just go randomly plucking greens! I'm all for wildharvesting, but one has to be careful.

Manggy said...

Ah! I do see persimmons here from time to time, but I never know what to do with them. Dandelion greens are a different matter, though :) The salad looks lovely!

Dani Spies said...

I love dandelion greens but have never tried them raw. This salad has me intrigued... thanks for the inspiration:).

Anonymous said...

Pretty salad! Too bad I don't like dandelions, I'm very bitter sensitive.

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

A colorful and interesting salad! It must taste gorgeous!



Deeba PAB said...

Another great idea Susan...can see foodies around the globba shunning weed killer & chomping on weeds! The ingredients are going further & further away from what now seems as a very limited range of fruits & veggies. This is exotic!

Debbie said...

What a great looking salad. Something different and I bet it is so tasty!

Michelle said...

Dandelion greens are one of my favorites! But persimmons I've yet to try...just scared I guess. How silly! Anyway, great idea for pairing flavors like this. Thank you!

Stacey Snacks said...

Your salad looks wonderful.
You know how much I love figs?
well, I love dates just as much!

I bought a huge container of Medjool dates at Trader Joe's yesterday.
Going to eat them, and make some date nut bread!

FOODalogue said...

This salad sounds delicious -- and your photos are beautiful.

Andrea said...

I wish I still lived somewhere with a yard! I wouldn't try the dandelions growing in New York! But you have reminded me that it's persimmon time! This salad looks delicious, especially with the combination of persimmons and dates. Yum!

Karen said...

What an unusual and delicious sounding salad. I love medjools!

Simona Carini said...

I have never put dates in salads: I will try soon. No persimmons at our market yet: maybe tomorrow.

Pip said...

You know that I've never tried dandelions?! I didn't know they were eatable, maybe because I don't see it around here... shame on me! ;)

Rachel said...

A stunning creation out of weed! and a weed whose flowers fascinate me....

Kara said...

I've always wondered if I could eat those dandelions.

On an unrelated note - I just found/read your recent Halloween article on NPR... and WOW do those desserts look absolutely stunning. I must make my way through those... so glad I clicked on that article - you should post those so everyone knows about them! YUM! Happy Halloween!

T.W. Barritt at Culinary Types said...

I'm not sure I'd ever consume anything that came out of MY lawn, but if the greens were nurtured by a grownup, that would be different. Yours look delicious!

Elle said...

Great salad..the dressing alone is an inspiration, then add the persimmons and dates...mmmm.

Anonymous said...

Love dandelion greens! Always have..even as a kid. The bitterness never bothered me :)

Susan from Food Blogga said...

kalyn-Yeah, I think supermarket ones are the better way to go anyway. :)

helene-I appreciate that. I think fm's here are a great source of inspiration.

kristen-Thanks for your tip. I was being tongue-in-cheek. Please readers: don't go around eating your backyard weeds. :)

mark-Now you know what to do!

dani-They're terrific in salads.

linda-Aw, that's too bad.

rosa-It's a burst of flavors indeed.

deeba-"Exotic" huh? Ooh, I like that. :)

debbie-It really is something special.

michelle-Oh, you must try persimmons. They are incredible!

stacey-mejools are my weakness. And as for date-nut bread, please give me a call when it comes out of the oven. ;)

foodalogue-Thank you so much!

andrea-Yeah, the persimmon season has just begun. Yay!

karen-Me too! Thanks.

simona-Oh, they're wonderful. You must try it.

pip-Try them sometime if you find some.

rachel-Well, thank you kindly!

kara-Thank you! I'm so happy you liked the NPR article. Those desserts were really good. I'll mention it on an upcoming post about candy and cookies!

tw-Nurtured greens are the way to go.

maryann-A girl after my own heart. :)

The Italian Dish said...

Wow, this takes me back. We used to eat dandelion greens when I was a kid back in the 60's. My dad loved them. This looks really beautiful!

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful combination and very festive, too - perfect for autumn and the holidays.

Christine said...

This is quite a beautiful salad, Susan. And I love the vinaigrette you made to go with it.

ExpatChef said...

I was just eyeing the persimmons in the store ... thanks!

Heather said...

i love dandelion greens! this looks wonderful. i have some persimmons i was looking to use - the combination with dates sounds delicious. yum :)

Proud Italian Cook said...

You sure did upscale this simple dish I use to eat as a kid! I can still recall the older Italian women out picking the dandelion greens!

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

I can find them in the yard but I've not seen them at my grocery. Now I'll look at the speciality stores. This salad looks and sounds goregeous!

Unknown said...

Dandelions are weeds here in our paddock and once they seed, they'll spread anywhere the land with the help of my kids blowing them off the stem hehehe... We have an edible dandelion here in NZ which is called puha (sonchus asper), growing anywhere in the garden. We weed them but once they are steamed and dressed with sesame seeds with the help of a little crushed garlic, WOW, the taste is just like spinach!

Alexa said...

I am getting persimmons in my csa box this week. Now I know what to do with them. This salad looks so fresh and tasty.

Anonymous said...

I think it's pretty safe to say that I've never had this before. Such an interesting combination...

Lori Lynn said...

I need to use persimmons. This is an inspired combination of ingredients Susan.

Susan from Food Blogga said...

elaine-I love when food stories spark memories.

lynda-I made a similar salad last year for Thanksgiving which was very well received.

christine-the vinaigrette is delicious on so many salads. Thanks!

expatchef-Now you have to go back and buy some!

heather-They are fabulous together!

marie-Really? That's funny.

tanna-Good luck!

arfi-Thank goodness for kids! :)Ooh, I'd love to try puha.

alexa-Yay! You're going to love them.

jude-Thank you.

lorilynn-Thank you so much.

Peter M said...

Persimmons are an under-rated darn tasty.

The dandeloin/fruit contrast works wonderfull here and the salad's so coloureful!

Anonymous said...

My grandmother (on the Italian side) loved dandelion greens. She made sandwiches from them. We're making this salad tonight, possibly as a test run for our upcoming holiday dinner. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

This sounds delicious and it looks so pretty. I love that interplay of sweet fruits with sharp greens.

Sig said...

I saw dandelion greens at the Whole Foods Market and wondered if anyone actually ate them :) Now I know! This salad looks delicious Susan! I picked up a bunch of Fuyu persimmons,thinking I'd make salad, but we ate them all as snacks!... Don't you just love fall?

Mansi said...

this salad sounds really refreshing Susan, and I'd never heard about Medjool dates! thanks for introducing them to me:)

Anonymous said...

I've always been curious about dandelions and I frequently have to weed them from our garden. Unfortunately, I'll have to refrain from trying them since my dogs probably peed on them! What an exotic looking salad.

Jeanne said...

Looks wonderful! One year we did have dandelion leaves from the garden in our salad, but since then I'm afraid Nick has waged war on them and largely won the battle. The ones on the verges I'm far too scared to pick, particularly since we have ponies and goats form the nearby city farm on our verges and you have no idea WHAT'S been on those leaves :o)