That aside, I endeavored to test out every single part of dandelions in different decoctions, like tea but when you boil it in water you do not let it steep (or sit). I did this because sources told me they were too bitter when left to sit. I harvested the entire plant and organized every part of them:
1. Flower Stems
2. White Flowers (not the whispy wishing flowers, but the flowers that half-bloomed white; pictured below)
3. Half-bloomed Dark Yellow Flowers (again, pictured)
4. Fully-bloomed Yellow Flowers
5. Fresh, Unbloomed Young Flowers
6. Fresh, Unbloomed Young Flowers, Opened Manually (I thought the flavor may be released more)
9. Red Stems of Leaves (the bottom parts that attached to the stalk of the plant)
Next I tried the leaves. I tried them on their own, merely washed but unaltered otherwise, but they were too bitter. Many people suggested eating them with salad but I don't think any dressing would be strong enough. So I sautéed them in olive oil with onion and some salt, as this was the most appealing recipe I found online. However, I couldn't stomach them. The bitterness didn't go away with cooking and unfortunately I couldn't even swallow one bite.
Upon boiling, the unbloomed flowers opened further. The flowers of all conditions were very absorbent. Oddly, of all flower variations, the white, partially-bloomed ones were most flavorful as a tea. The yellow, fully bloomed were least flavorful. When left to steep in the decoction, teas tasted better; though I only used a few flowers for a 6 oz. cup so it couldn't get too bitter. Decoction was light yellow. As seen in pictures, all parts of the plant were fresh and harvested within the hour they were used.
Of all my experimentation, the roots were the most promising. They took the longest to boil, and coloration of water took longest; though in the end it matched that of the flowers, a chamomile-like yellow. I used about 1 oz. fresh for a 6 oz. cup, online sources said to use two ounces but I only got about 3 oz. and I wanted to dry some, so I skimped a bit. All other teas smelled of cooked greens but the root tea was sweeter smelling. I left the roots to steep. They tasted good, less flavorful than the flowers, and Splenda improved this flavor. The dried roots had the same flavor in the tea, and it is not so awful, but certainly not enjoyable. I would suggest only if needed as a diuretic or to calm a stomach, similar to ginger.
Conclusively, this plant, while it won't kill you to eat it, isn't really edible. The tea isn't so awful, but I am hoping to order some store bought organic tea to see if it is any better; it wasn't enjoyable. I wouldn't recommend them to anyone, but if you want to experiment beyond what I have done, please let me know how it turns out! Some enjoy this bitter flavor, but I like spinach and kale and other leafy greens, so I don't know who would like something this bitter! A suggestion I heard was to fry them in flour, or use them in frittata, but this isn't necessarily healthy so I didn't try it; seems to defeat the purpose. But good luck on experiments, and if anyone has any suggestions for different herbs or plants or wildflowers or roots or any natural things to try, let me know!