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Requested Recipe:


"I've read your section about dandelion wines and have become enthusiastic
about making one myself coming spring. It happens that my girlfriend's father
has his own bees so we were thinking about having them gather dandelion
honey. This could then be combined with the flowers to make a true dandelion
mead. However we haven't found such a recipe and are surely not experienced
enough to engineer one ourselves. Can you help?" Paul Bruin, Nijmegen, The Netherlands


I have written enough about dandelions elsewhere, but I have to comment on Paul's idea. I think it is great! I don't know how you get bees to concentrate on dandelions and exclude other flowers, but that is not really my concern. I have seen enough bees pollinating dandelions to know they will do their best. I just don't know if one will ever get a true "dandelion honey."

The following recipe does not require dandelion honey, but if one had such a honey I am sure it would make it better.


Boil two quarts water and stir honey into it. Continue boiling 20 minutes, skimming off any foam that may appear. Set aside covered to cool. Meanwhile, chop raisins and prepare zest of lemon and orange. Combine dandelion petals, chopped raisins and zests in fine mesh nylon straining bag. When honey-water cools, bring volume up to 1 gallon. Combine all ingredients except yeast in primary, stir, cover, and set aside 12 hours. Add activated yeast and cover primary. Stir daily until vigorous fermentation subsides (about 7-10 days). Drip-drain straining bag (do not squeeze). Pour liquid into secondary and attach airlock. Rack after 30 days, topping up with water, mead or dandelion wine. Refit airlock and set aside. Rack every 45-60 days until mead clears and no longer deposits sediment. Rack, stabilize and bulk age 6 months. Sweeten to taste and rack into bottles. Bottle age another 3-6 months before tasting. Improves with age. [Author's own recipe]

My thanks to Paul Bruin, Nijmegen, The Netherlands, for this request.

This page was updated January 31st, 2003

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