Front Yard Foraging - Dandelion Clover Salad with Raspberry Dressing.
Raspberry bushes are one of the most rewarding and frustrating plants for urban gardeners. We only have space for a bush or two, which sounds grand but really equals four spindly arms with intermittently ripe berries.
At any given moment there're lots of prickers, lots of leaves, lots of white/pink/funny-looking berries, and only 7-8 perfect berries ripe for the picking. They're exciting because they're BERRIES. You can EAT them, and best of all they're in YOUR garden. They're frustrating, because there's barely a handful. It's barely enough for a snack, much less something you can share with friends, families and the neighbors jealously eying your hoard.
The best thing about garden raspberries is there's a steady supply. Once you have a couple great, simple recipes under your belt, you can showcase your garden's yield all summer (or if you live in the land of squirrels and jays, as long as you can beat out the natural competitors).
Best, Easiest, Awesomest Recipe for Garden Raspberries
Raspberry Syrup is the best, easiest, awesomest recipe for your handful of garden raspberries.
- 10-15 individual raspberries, (preferably from your own backyard; smushed is okay)
- 1 teaspoon granulated sugar, (organic is great)
- 1-3 teaspoons water
- Place berries in very small cup or bowl. A teacup works great!
- Add 1/2 tsp sugar. Mash the sugar into the berries until the berries completely fall apart. (Less than a minute)
- Add 1-3 teaspoons water to thin mixture.
- Taste. Add additional 1/2 teaspoons of sugar to taste.
Dandelion and Clover Salad with Raspberry Syrup
Fresh raspberry syrup goes with pretty much everything. One of the best ways to emphasize that the berries are from YOUR garden, is to pair the syrup with garden greens - especially garden greens that couldn't come from anywhere else.
Dandelion Salad is one of the best, easiest recipes for an unforgettable meal.
- Wash the dandelion and clover well.
- REMOVE the dandelion stems. The stems are very bitter, and not appealing unless you really love bitter greens.
- REMOVE the clover stems. You really only need the leaves, but you can leave a tiny bit to hold the leaves together in clover-clusters.
- Steam dandelion and clover (in separate piles) on a George Foreman grill or a panini press.
- Place dandelion on plate. Top with clover.
- Surround with something everyone loves and will definitely eat (Roasted Turkey, Bacon, Chicken)
- Top with a few dollops or drizzles of syrup.
How Else to Showcase Raspberry Syrup?
The great thing about this raspberry syrup (besides the incredibly easy preparation) is versatility. There are dozens of easy recipes for every occasion.
Expecting guests? A little syrup goes a long way...
- For a fancy dinner, pair raspberry sauce with Filet Mignon or any other type of beef.
- Use syrup to accent ice cream, Crepes or Raspberry Waffles
- Serve a dollop of raspberry syrup on top of baked ham.
- Spread a tiny bit on a turkey sandwich.
- Spread a thin layer on top of cream cheese, and serve with crackers.
- Raspberry Syrup cocktails - Add a bit to a Mimosa or Champagne for a breakfast treat.
- Soda Syrups - Add to Cola, Sprite, or other fizzy drinks for a subtle twist on the typical flavors.