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Things to Eat: Daylily Buds

So daylilies are invasive and beautiful and at least around here, incredibly prolific. Did you know they’re also edible? You can eat the shoots, tubers, buds, and flowers. Evidently dried flowers are used in some Chinese recipes as “golden needles”, and they can be used to thicken soups and gravies. We have an abundance of them here at the Manor, because as it turns out they are perfectly willing to spread from seed if you don’t deadhead the buggers.

Anyway, if you want to reduce the number of seedpods they produce without wasting them, here is Andrea’s Simple and Easy Recipe For Daylily Buds!

You will need:
A bunch of daylily buds, just when there is some orange on them but before they mature and open.
A clove or two of garlic (garlic to taste, really)
Olive Oil
Skillet that will hold the amount of daylily buds you have picked.

Step one: Go dig up a garlic bulb from your garden and grab a couple cloves. Alternatively, you may purchase garlic at the store, but it won’t be as good. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Step two: Gather as many daylily buds as you feel like you want to eat. They are delicous, so plan accordingly.

Step three: Wash and drain the buds to get any bugs off them that may be lurking.

My hand holding a paper plate on which are many freshly-washed daylily buds, all about 3 to 4 inches long.

Step Four: Heat your skillet to a high medium or a low high heat and coat it in olive oil. Then add just a wee bit more olive oil. Wait for it to be good and hot, then crush your cloves of garlic directly into the pan. Stir the garlic around a moment and enjoy the smell of sauteeing garlic.

Step 5: Dump your daylily buds in the skillet. Sautee until the bases are a bright, vivid green and the tips have caramelized.

Step 6: Put sauteeed buds on plate, grab your fork, and dig in. They are mild, crunchy greens with a taste sort of like a green bean but not quite.

5 thoughts on “Things to Eat: Daylily Buds

  1. Is there a specific kind of day lily that you should use or any of them that get seedpods like that? I’ve got two different kinds in my front yard that I’d call lilies and I used to have a third kind out back before I smothered it in raspberries.

    1. Any of the daylily cultivars, that is the lilies with the long leaves that look like very large grass, will work. Regular lilies (upright stem with lots of little leaves) are poisonous and don’t eat them.

  2. Really? I mean… really? Will you cook some for me?

  3. They do the same exact thing with flowers from zucchini plants in mexico. They use then in quesadillas. Yummy.
    I think they put onion in too.

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