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My Favorite Green Just Might Be Dandelions (Especially With Beans)

There's not much original about loving beans and greens. They're a natural combination. The greens are fresh and healthy, and if I have my way, a little bitter. They are offset by the creamy, indulgent beans. My grocery store carries them in their organic section. I hope yours does, too. You can always ask the produce manager to bring them in if they don't already. I don't tend to see them at the farmers markets. They are considered a weed. I normally just saute a little onion and garlic in olive oil to start but I had a fennel bulb heading south so I added it as well. It took almost 20 minutes on a medium low heat but it was worth it as the fennel caramelizes beautifully and this adds a lot to the dish. I'm not so keen on a strong anise flavor but it's mellowed to the point of being groovy when you cook it this way. Once you've rinsed the dandelions, chop them and let any water you used rinsing them cling to the leaves. It makes part of the sauce later. Add the chopped dandelions to the onion mix and try and coat each piece with the hot vegetables. It will seem like too much but within a few minutes, it cooks way down. Stir occasionally. In about ten minutes, the mixture is ready. It's great as it is, over rice, stuffed into a pita or best of all, tossed gently with warm beans. Everything was fine but why not make it finer? I added some toasted black walnuts. Ding Dang! That's the ticket. I tried it again with just a few drops of lemon juice but it wasn't necessary. I could eat this every day and be a happy fellow.

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