I fed an entire half bunch of rotting organic dandelion greens to the worms this week. I did not feel good about it, but at least they did not go in the trash. The only reason I didn’t feed them the entire bunch is that I split my CSA deliveries with my neighbor, so I only had half a bunch to figure out what to do with. I have no idea if she ate her half or not.
I have learned to be pretty adventurous with greens over the seven or so years that I’ve been a subscriber to the Be Wise Ranch CSA, but dandelion greens still make me balk. They’re so bitter; I can’t imagine what people do with them to make them palatable. I actually had great plans to make a dandelion green salad with hard boiled eggs, sweet onions and hot bacon dressing — nothing like smothering something in bacon to make it go down easier — but I didn’t get to it until they had started to get slimy and gross, so to the worms they went.
I am sure I will get comments from well-meaning people telling me how great dandelion greens are and how if I just dress them with a light vinaigrette I’m sure I will learn to love them, but I won’t believe them. Perhaps they will be people like the ones I found in this flickr album called Dandelions in the Park, who appear to be harvesting dandelion flowers and roots for consumption. There is no indication of how they are preparing them, or if they did anything with the greens.
Looking through the photos makes me feel vaguely threatened and on the defensive. I wondered why that was. Perhaps it is because purposefully seeking out dandelions for consumption, treating them as some kind of delicacy, challenges my label of them as a weed and a nuisance. I think I’m pretty open-minded, but perhaps I am not as open-minded as I thought. That is the bigger challenge. Without even knowing these people, I find myself making up reasons why I would not want to eat dandelions. “I am not a Dandelion-Eater!” I say. I occasionally get the greens in my delivery, but I eat them only under duress. Letting them rot was probably kind of passive-agressive, actually. “They can make me bring dandelions home, but by God they can’t make me eat them!”
I’m trying to be flexible, though, and am game for your suggestions on what to do with the next batch that comes in. But for now I will add it to my practice of noticing when I like things and when I don’t. Sometimes that’s the best you can do.
Here’s the tally for the worms this week:
- 5 banana peels
- 1 Be Green compostable cardboard meat tray from Whole Foods (rinsed) – not sure if the worms will eat this or not
- 4 coffee filters with grounds
- 3/4 cucumber peel
- 1/2 bunch dandelion greens, rotting
- 1 dilapidated Handi-Wipe
- 1/2 c. cooked mixed vegetables, moldy
- 1 paper towel
- 3/4 bunch strawberry tops
- 3 sweet potato peelings
- 1 tea bag
Total weight: a whopping 3.5 pounds. The banana peels are heavy, as are the peels from 3 whole sweet potatoes
P.S. Happy Mother’s Day to all the mothers out there. I was going to say that I probably have some worm mothers in my bin, but I think redwworms are actually hermaphrodites, so they are both mother and father. We’ll save the topic of the worms’ sex lives for another posting, however. ( I know you can’t wait!)