Friday, April 8, 2011


Back in the winter I talked about my top five winter ingredients and ways in which to use them. So here are my favourites for Spring, and what I am looking forward to stocking up on! Knowing 5 ingredients like this is great as sometimes just being able to focus in on a few key items helps can really help in meal planning and recipe searching!

1) Peas
I love peas! They are just to me the epitome of springtime, with their fresh taste, vibrant green colour and sweet flavour. They are a great ingredient for many different dishes; soups, pastas, side dishes. Quite versatile and extremely inexpensive, peas are a great go-to for the spring.
- Sweet pea risotto
- Crostini with mushed sweet peas and lemon ricotta
- Pea soup

2) Asparagus
I don't think there is one vegetable I truly couldn't live without other than asparagus. Such a great flavour, and to me a good looking vegetable. It always looks good on a plate and can really make a dish look pretty and rustic. Great on their own, with natural flavours of olive oil, salt and pepper or one of my favourite ways, with eggs in a frittata. They also could accompany any meat dish you serve!
- Roasted asparagus
- Asparagus frittata

3) Lemon
I am obsessed with lemons these days. Their tart flavour, versatility and bright colour just draw me in! A great springtime flavour, you will be sure to love this ingredient. It can be in salad dressings, in desserts, freshly squeezed
- Meyer Lemon tart
- Lemon ricotta for a crostini (basically this is a light and fluffy spread that can go on a crostini, delicious on its own or with crushed peas on top, this is a great springtime dish. To assemble just mix 1/2 ricotta with 2 tbsp lemon juice, some lemon zest, salt and pepper. For a deeper lemon flavour continue adding lemon juice to the mix)

4) Mint
I keep repeating how "fresh" flavour all of these ingredients are, and I guess the word fresh is just what I think of as necessary for Springtime. Mint is another one of those ingredients. After using it in my lab at school this week I rediscovered my love for mint! Beautiful as a garnish!
- Mint sauce for lamb chops
- Mojito (Cuban drink with fresh mint crushed into it)
- Two ingredient combo: pea soup with mint (also mint as a garnish for this)

5) Honeydew melon 
Honeydew for me just brings back the memories. In high school, everyday after school my mom would have a fruit platter waiting for us, and springtime meant copious amounts of honeydew, that is definitely part of the reason I adore honeydew. A great fruit, with a smooth texture and extremely sweet flavour, kids will gobble this one off their plates!
- Cold melon soup
- Melon wrapped with prosciutto
- Cut up on a fruit tray

Happy Spring!!

photo credit: google images

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