Every week — often with your help — Food52’s Executive Editor Kristen Miglore is unearthing recipes that are nothing short of genius. Today: A near-instant springy green vegetable before the springy greens. (And, yes, you can cook lettuce — here’s why you should.) It’s easy to think that lettuce ought to be served cold, that its virtue is in its firm and fibrous nature.
Ramp yourself up for ramp season because these relatives of wild leeks—they resemble a cross between svelte scallions and lilies of the valley—are finally showing up in farmers’ markets on the East Coast.
We took a broad look at the list of 2014 James Beard Nominees to see if there were larger trends afoot in the food world. The country cooking of the Midwest—a region that spans the bullseye of the United States from Ohio to North Dakota, commonly called the breadbasket of America—is “rustic, gutsy, and simple,” says “The New Midwestern Table,” author Amy Thielen.
Spring produce and bright, light flavors take center stage in these fresh pasta dishes, from spaghetti tossed with morels and asparagus to orecchiette with broccoli rabe and tangy goat cheese.
Rhubarb is often dubbed the “pie plant,” and the stalks, soft and delectable when baked, do make a divine pie filling. But pie is by no means the only way to experience rhubarb. It’s delicious in all kinds of desserts, and this tart vegetable also works well in savory dishes.
“[A wok] can make foods in ways that other pans cannot,” explained Xi’an Famous Foods co-owner Jason Wang, citing the fact that a wok is great for high-temperature cooking, which helps makes searing and caramelizing easier. “If you’re just pursuing it as a hobby because it’s fun to tinker, that’s one thing.
Photo credit: James Ransom, Food52 Tennyson famously wrote that “in the spring a young man’s fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love.” For some of us, however, ‘tis the season our fancies turn—obsessively—to seasonal produce. The farmer’s market starts glowing with tulips and ramps, morels, and asparagus. But don’t totally kick that winter staple—soup—to the curb just yet. This asparagus soup is just as appropriate for Meatless Monday self-sustenance as it is for entertaining. It’s fortified with Thai aromatics (lemongrass, coconut milk, and ginger), spiced with black pepper, and amped up with a spritz of acidity from lemon juice. Thai-Inspired Asparagus Soup From Food52 1 large onion, chopped 3 tablespoons unsalted butter or canola oil 3 pounds asparagus (after trimming an inch off the stalk) 1/2 teaspoon black pepper 1.5 cups coconut milk 4-5 cups chicken or vegetable broth 3 tablespoons finely minced lemongrass 3 tablespoons finely chopped ginger 1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice 1.
No cream required: Tahini gives this soup its buttery flavor and silky texture — and makes a serving of dark leafy greens unusually enticing.
There’s nothing that says “springtime!” quite like fresh peas. Except, maybe, tender stalks of asparagus. Oh, or hearty, earthy morel mushrooms.
When you think “romesco,” you probably don’t think about carrots—this Spanish staple is traditionally made with red peppers. But that’s no reason not to branch out. Here, we combine buttery pine nuts, grated garlic, and Aleppo pepper with sweet roasted and puréed carrots for a truly memorable sauce you’ll want to put on just about anything.
These Spring Vegetable Pizzas would also be delicious with shredded leftover chicken. Or, if you like, top them with thinly sliced prosciutto right after they come out of the oven.
Start appreciating the slice of lime that comes with that bourbon and ginger, vodka tonic or poached fish entrée, because what Mexicans are now calling “green gold” has shot up in price.
This is a far cry from army-green split pea soup. Cooking the peas briefly retains their vibrant color, and the addition of fresh herbs keeps the finished soup looking and tasting bright. Delicious warm or chilled, it’s a springtime staple. SEE MORE: 15 Food That Are Better Frozen Ingredients: * 3 tablespoons unsalted butter * 1 medium onion, chopped * 4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth, divided * 6 cups shelled fresh peas (from about 6 pounds pods) or frozen peas, thawed * 1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves * 1/4 cup fresh mint leaves * Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper * 1/4 cup crème fraîche or sour cream * 2 tablespoons heavy cream or water * Chopped fresh chives (for serving) SEE MORE: 5 Easy Ways to Make Your Chocolate Chip Cookies Even Better Preparation: Melt butter in a large heavy pot over medium heat.
recipe by The Bon Appétit Test Kitchen, photo by Romulo Yanes INGREDIENTS: * 6 ounces ground chicken (about 3/4 cup) * 1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs * 6 tablespoons finely grated Parmesan, divided, plus more for garnish * 4 garlic cloves, 2 minced, 2 thinly sliced * 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives * 1 large egg, whisked to blend * Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper * 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil * 1 leek, white and pale-green parts only, sliced into 1/4-inch rounds * 5 cups low-salt chicken broth * 3/4 cup ditalini or other small pasta * 1 cup 1/2-inch rounds peeled carrots * 1 cup (packed) baby spinach * Chopped fresh basil SEE MORE: 25 Ways to Use Sriracha PREPARATION: Mix chicken, breadcrumbs, 3 Tbsp. Parmesan, 2 minced garlic cloves, chives, egg, 3/4 tsp. salt, and 1/4 tsp. pepper in a medium bowl. Form into 1/2-inch-diameter meatballs (makes about 28). Heat oil in a small pot over medium heat.
When she has the kitchen all to herself, Phyllis Grant of Dash and Bella cooks beautiful iterations of what solo meals were always meant to be: exactly what you want, when and where you want them.
A spring salad can be as simple as tender greens tossed with vinaigrette, or you can step it up by adding seasonal treats like peas, asparagus, radishes, and baby artichokes.
Who would imagine a risotto cooking in less than 30 minutes? Our clever shortcut lies in using the microwave to parcook the rice, essentially giving it a head start before it hits the stove.
We keep our eyes peeled for the freshest, most in-season vegetables and the best deals on store shelves. And we do it for you, in the name of making everyday eating unicorn-sighting-exciting. (At least, we try.) Here’s what to buy, and the very best ways to eat it—now!