About This Recipe
This classic Lebanese side dish balances savory, slightly bitter greens with the sweetness of caramelized onions. Taking the time to deeply caramelize the onions is worth it, if you can manage to find the time. If not, just get them nice and brown on the outside.
Dandelion greens are full of minerals such as iron, potassium, calcium, phosphorus and magnesium, making them a perfect fatigue-fighting food. They are also richer in vitamins A, B1, B3 and C than spinach. They have been shown to have powerful protective and detoxifying properties for the liver, which is enhanced by cilantro. In traditional medicine systems, dried dandelion greens are regarded as an important pre-natal herb and a galactagogue, though this has not been studied sufficiently.
Note: A pinch of baking soda helps onions brown faster.
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 small onion, thinly slivered
- 1 small pinch of baking soda
- 1 lb (450 g) dandelion greens, washed, thick stem ends trimmed, and coarsely chopped
- 1 garlic clove, sliced
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Juice of one lemon (about 2 Tbsp/ 30 ml)
- 1 handful of cilantro (about 1/4 cup), chopped
Step 1Put the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. When the oil shimmers, add the onion and baking soda and stir to coat the slices with oil. Cook the onions on very low heat for 25-30 minutes, until they’re deeply caramelized.
Step 2While the onions cook, boil a gallon (4 L) or so of salted water in a large pot and add the greens, cooking them for about 10 minutes until dark green and tender. Drain the leaves, squeezing well to remove water, and set aside.
Step 3Remove half the onions from the pan and set aside, then add the garlic to the pan and let it cook for a minute before adding the greens and salt and stirring to combine. Cook the greens on medium for about 5 minutes, then add the lemon juice and cilantro. Stir well, and taste for seasoning. Spoon the greens onto a large plate, top with the reserved onions, and serve.
Substitutions: Members of the chicory family like escarole, radicchio, and curly endive are all great choices if you can’t find dandelion greens.
Level Up: Forage dandelions! Just make sure they come from somewhere that hasn’t been chemically sprayed.
Zero Waste: Chop the cilantro stems along with the leaves and use them as well.