Rustic Knots with Dandelion or Nettle

Field of wishes
I believe it was my Cousin that once posted on facebook a comment by a child that stopped me to think that everything really depends on perspective. When driving past a field of Dandelions that were in the white seed head stage, her son had exclaimed, “Look Mom, a field full of wishes!” It brought Dandelions into a new light since they are often hated, pulled out and sometimes poisoned.
dandelions
Dandelions actually have many nutrients including, Vitamin A, C, K, Calcium, Potassium, Iron and Manganese. Sometimes in the spring I have picked the leaves of the new Dandelion flowers, rinsed them off and patted them dry and then placed them in my vegetable dehydrator. They dry quite quickly. After they are dry I have crumbled them and stored them in little mini grip bags. The recipe below uses dried Dandelion or Nettle in the bread dough. Nettle is also a natural superfood that contains, Vitamin A and C, Iron, Potassium, Manganeses and Calcium.
rustic knots

Rustic Knots with Dandelion or Nettle

6 dl/2.5 c warm water
1 50 g/1.8 oz block of fresh yeast or a sachet of dry yeast 11g/0.4 oz
1.5-2 tsp fine sea salt
1 generous tablespoon of brown sugar
4.7 dl/ 2 c oatmeal
0.6 dl/ 1/4 c sesame seeds
2.4 dl/ 1 c rye flour
about 7 dl/ 3 c wheat flour
1/2 dl/ 0.2 c dried and crumbled dandelion or nettle
1/2 dl/ 0.2 c olive oil

Sea salt flakes for on top of the knots

This amount works great in a stand mixer but it will work fine if kneaded by hand. The dough is intended to be a bit sticky so that the rolls are moist on the inside after baking.
Pour the warm water into the mixing bowl. Add the yeast, sugar and salt. Mix until dissolved. Add the oatmeal and allow it absorb the water for a few minutes. Next add in the sesame seeds and rye flour. Allow the mixer to knead for a few minutes so that the flour has time to absorb the liquid. Next add in half of the wheat flour. After it has been thouroghly mixed in, add the dried Nettle or Dandelion.
nokkonen
Add the rest of the flour in parts and finally knead in the olive oil. Allow to rise so that the dough is double the size. Today I let my dough rise nearly three hours when I was outside with the kids enjoying the sun.

Pour the dough on a flour dusted surface and form little “hot dog” shaped dough strips which can be easily made into a simple pretzel-like knot. Don’t worry if they are not perfect. The oven usually makes everything look better!
Place them on a lined baking sheet, brush with water and sprinkle with the sea salt flakes. Allow to rise and bake for about 12 minutes at 225C/435F.

knots

knots and butter

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47 Comments

  1. Wow, such a “traditional” recipe. I love it. I was just talking to a colleague of mine about nettle soup. Talk about timing.

    I love your recipe and will definitely have to give it a try. I haven’t had nettle in a long time.

    Thanks for sharing another great recipe! 🙂

    1. Now would be the season for nettle soup! I was thinking that other day that if my schedule permits I should pull on the rubber boots and go pick some nettle and dandelion! The nettle works great in a savory crepe dough as well!

      1. I had no idea, nettle could be so versatile and be used in so many dishes.

        I know the nettle soup is really nice and I bet with your nettle breads, would be even better.

        I really reading your blog and I’m looking forward to more recipes and posts about Finnish traditions.

    2. I’ve ‘discovered’ that white dead nettles are also edible – no sting and coming up everywhere in my garden! the site ‘Plants for a Future’ http://www.pfaf.org has a great database for checking edible wild plants out on…really like your site and recipes 🙂

  2. I love dandelions to look at. They are so cheerful. I keep meaning to try the leaves, but somehow never take the plunge. This sounds like a good way to begin the process.

  3. Beautiful! Such bewitching photos. Lovely words and recipe too. My mother always picked dandelion leaves for us to have in salads and soups. Will definitely try this. Thank you. x

  4. Hmmm…never had nettles, other than where I didn’t want them. 🙂 And I’ve never dried the dandelion leaves, just used them in salads. Another good use for hubby’s dehydrator, and for his breadmaker. Can this recipe be done in a breadmaker? He has used it constantly since I bought it for him for his birthday two weeks ago, and I love finding new things for him to try in it.

    1. You could try this recipe in the breadmaker but I would first check what is the amount of liquid of the dough that the breadmaker needs and adjust the recipe accordingly. I think I would probably add a little flour as well, since this dough is a bit sticky.

  5. That’s just awesome. Does it really affect the flavour of the bread? I would be scared to pick the wrong thing and poison everyone. After all, I do live in Australia where everything is poisonous!

    1. The nettle that I used in the dough was in such small pieces that it barely affected the flavor…but it hopefully increased the nutritional factor. With a larger amount, or larger pieces the flavor has more of a presence.

      1. Okay. I was wondering if it gave it a.. gardening kind of flavour. lol. 🙂 They looked great!

  6. Do you make tea with the dried leaves too? Have been meaning to pick some nettle or dandelion leaves for ages but haven’t managed to yet – never sure if they will be polluted or too mature

    1. I haven’t tried making tea yet. But I have bought nettle tea from the store…maybe someday I’ll get around to trying it. I think that they are fine if picked from areas that do not have heavy traffic and when they first come into season.

  7. We just went on a weed foraging walk last week and attended a weed workshop for Food Revolution Day- so great to see yet another use for dandelions! Thanks for sharing a lovely recipe and idea!!! 🙂

    1. Yes, I would recommend using gloves, pants and maybe even rubber boots! If using nettle fresh it should be cooked for about 5 minutes to get rid of any possible nitrates. If dried, it does not need to be cooked and will retain a larger amount of vitamin C.

  8. I love your little love knots. Adorable and little healthy and very delicious. Now see my mom used to always complain about dandelions and now your making fantastic little buns. When I was little I used to think my bouquets of dandelions were beautiful. I still love looking at these weeds…flowers in a field.

    1. Last week all of the dandelions were in bloom here…not the field has become the white “field of wishes” 🙂 They sure bring some sunshine to the ditches along the road.

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