I get really excited about food in the spring. People who know me may wonder if this is possible given my high year-round enthusiasm levels, but it’s true! Each week, it seems, there’s a new ingredient poking up from the ground, tempting me to incorporate it into my next dish. I’ve posted some photos and recipes of my favorite spring recipes below:
Bacon Wild Leek Quiche:
This was an amazingly delicious quiche. Use your favorite spinach quiche recipe, but substitute fried leeks for spinach. Start by frying 8 slices of bacon and cool reserved fat. Substitute two tbsp. bacon fat for two of the tablespoons of butter in your crust. Fry your leeks and allow to cool down to room temperature. Then follow your recipe to get the right ratio of eggs, milk and greens. Sautée sliced garlics in your unwashed bacon frying pan until soft, add crumbled bacon and stir until browned, and sprinkle this mixture on top for a garnish. We also garnished with our first fiddleheads.*
Chive Deviled Eggs on a Bed of Sorel:
Ok, I’ll admit that this is a year-round recipe for me. Adding chives to the egg filling and placing on a bed of spring leaves adds welcome green to the dish. For filling: Mix egg yolks, mustard, mayonnaise, lemon juice, chives, black pepper and relish to taste. Mix until creamy and spoon into egg whites. Garnish with a sprinkle of paprika.
Barley Salads with Creamy Dijon Dressing:
This is the only salad dressing we eat in our house, and given the amount of salad consumed, that’s saying a lot! I recommend soaking your barley the night before to speed cooking time. Combine cooked barley, lightly steamed asparagus, peas or fiddleheads,* toasted hazelnuts, and finely chopped chives or red onions. Season to taste.
Asparagus, Fiddleheads, or Wilted Spring Greens with Hollandaise Sauce:
Hollandaise Sauce uses basic ingredients that enhance (rather than dominate) the flavors of sautéed spring veggies. With home grown egg yolks and grass-fed cow butter it adds nutrients to your meal and allows your body to absorb the fat soluble vitamins in the veggies. I always use the Joy of Cooking for traditional recipes like this.
- Melt 1/2 cup butter and keep warm
- Heat the water in your double boiler (we use a metal bowl that fits on top of our small saucepan). Before the water comes to a boil, add 3 egg yolks. Beat the yolks with a wire whisk until they begin to thicken.
- Add 1 tbsp. boiling water. Beat until thickened. Repeat until you’ve added 4 total tbsp. water.
- Add 1 1/2 tbsp lemon juice and 1/4 tsp. salt.
- Remove from heat and beat constantly while adding the warm melted butter.
*When eating fiddleheads, boil for five minutes until water is dark. Pour into colander and rinse any brown stuff away. Bring another pot of water to a boil and repeat twice more. This removes tannins, which cause indigestion.