Dandelion bud capers
50 g (about 2 oz) rinsed dandelion flower buds
or 100–250 ml (1/2–1 cup)
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
250 ml (1 cup) apple cider vinegar
coarse sea salt
Pour the flower buds into a glass jar, add the salt and vinegar. Leave in the fridge for 1–2 weeks.
Strain off the vinegar. Leave the buds on a paper towel for a while.
Layer with salt: pour 1 cm (1/3–1/2") of salt into a glass jar, add 1 cm (1/3–1/2") of flower buds, continue until the jar is full. Finish with a layer of salt.
Leave in room temperature for 3 months.
Use like capers.
The taste is near enough identical with that of true capers. I expect any soft-enough edible plant part will taste of vinegar and salt (like true capers do) if treated this way.
Hints and tips:
1) If you use a metal lid on your glass jar, protect that. Add some plastic wrap or waxed paper or similar between the jar and the lid. If you don't, the metal lid will corrode.
2) Remove all stem bits from the dandelion flower buds. They turn out a tad tough and chewy, where the buds themselves are soft.
3) Don't bother picking the tiniest flower buds from the center of the leaf rosette. Any size flower buds will do, and the larger ones are higher up (= you don't have to bend down so much to get them) and, well, larger, which means you'll have to pick fewer for your jarful of capers.
Rosalee de la Forêt: Looks good Henriette, here's another dandelion bud recipe: Pickled Dandelion Buds.