Dandelion, hosta, and parsley smoothies

Hosta & Dandelion Smoothies

I’m a huge fan of green smoothies, and being able to forage on the mountain in spring means I’m never short of greens to include. And the deer will eat all the hostas if I don’t get some first, so this week I went out to gather some.

fresh washed hosta greens
fresh washed hosta greens

Hostas are bright, tasty, crisp greens, just as good as spinach or branch lettuce (Saxifrage) for a base in salads or smoothies. We cook hosta greens as well, and they are equally good that way. Just cut them off at the base and they will grow back again in the same season.

I usually only harvest younger plants, but the entire plant is edible, all the way through the season. But like most everything, the older the plant gets, the tougher the leaves become, and you’ll also notice an increasing bitterness.

Cutting the shoots when they are still tightly rolled up (they look a bit like an asparagus) is what most people do, but mine are a bit past that stage.

fresh fluffy dandelions!
fresh fluffy dandelions!
cutting the green base off of dandelions
cutting the green base off of dandelions

Dandelion is everywhere right now, and while the greens are fairly bitter, the flowers are sweet and—if you don’t wash them too much—full of nutritious pollen. (The roots are awesome, roasted and ground for “coffee.” Smells just like chocolate cake.)

I washed my dandelion flower heads because we just had a rain and these are still pretty close to the ground, which means they get gritty and sandy. You can use kitchen scissors to cut off the green base so that you end up with mostly flower petals.

In the blender with coconut milk
In the blender with coconut milk

So for this particular green smoothie, I used about

  • half a blender packed loosely full of young hosta leaves
  • half a bunch of flat-leaf Italian parsley from the grocery (parsley is my favorite smoothie ingredient, makes everything taste so bright and fresh!)
  • a cup or two of dandelion petals
  • one can of full-fat organic coconut milk + half a can of water
  • one kiwi (I don’t peel mine)
  • lemon juice to taste

This makes two nice smoothies that are packed with nutrition, vitamins, and great taste. If you don’t drink them immediately, screw the tops on and stick them in the fridge for later.

Dandelion, hosta, and parsley smoothies
Dandelion, hosta, and parsley smoothies

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