Pissacan, dandelion, dandelion, wild chicory … these are just some of the names used for what is called the meadow sunflower: The dandelion.
Spontaneous plant, known above all as a purifying plant, it is from the etymology of the word Dandelion that we discover its main function. It derives, in fact, from the Greek “taraxis” imbalance and “akas” remedy. A remedy against imbalances, therefore, because while it purifies, favoring diuresis (this is the origin of the name “piscialetto”) it nourishes the body with sugary and bitter substances.
Thanks to the pleasant bitter taste it can be inserted in many recipes both cooked and raw. It is considered an “anti-waste plant” because you can use everything: the leaves for salads and side dishes, the flowers for infusions and elixirs, the buds in salt or vinegar (the so-called “Northern capers”), and the roasted roots as a kind of coffee (chicory, in fact).
Chef Enzo Gola uses it especially in spring, when the leaves are more tender, recalling grandmother’s large salads, who combined the dandelion with wild rocket and valerian after picking it – with him in tow – on the hills of Revigliasco, next to the home of grandfather Clemente called Mentin.