4.16.2015

COOK } The Stars of Spring



DC is finally showing off her full spring glory, and the farmers markets are gearing up with appearances from the season's superstar vegetables and fruits.

This video from an appearance on News Channel 8's Let's Talk Live is a few years old, but I refer to it as "That time I chewed a pickled ramp through an entire live TV segment." So I figured it's worth recycling.

Give it a watch and read on for tasty ideas for how to best use spring's produce:

ASPARAGUS
The freshly picked tender spears of spring are a far cry from the woody stalks you find in the off season. Look for them to make their first appearance in the next few weeks at the markets.
Make: Asparagus Benedict on quinoa nettle cakesPenne with asparagus, sage and peas; or simply grill it

RAMPS
Stinky, musky goodness is how I think of these wild onions.
Make: Ramp pickles, Buttermilk ramp biscuits

MICRO MUSTARD GREENS
Endless Summer Harvest specializes in these adorable baby greens with a spicy kick.
Make: Pile them on a BLT in place of lettuce, or toss into a salad for extra flavor.

STINGING NETTLES
Don't touch them raw or you'll understand where the name comes from, but dunk them in boiling water and they turn into perfectly edible, nutritious greens.
Make: Spring lasagna with asparagus, peas and stinging nettles, Nettle soup

RHUBARB
Every spring I look forward to making tangy jam and a simple rhubarb crostata.
Make: Rhubarb quick jam, Strawberry and rhubarb crostata

MORELS
One of spring's more elusive finds, these mushrooms with a super short season demand high prices but can be worth the splurge.
Make: Quiche with morels and scallions

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