Tag Archives: spring recipes

Spring Wild Ramp Pesto

 One of the first vegetable treats in early Spring is wild ramps! I grab a bunch as soon as I see it available and quickly make ramp pesto! the recipe is simple and much like the basil pesto you make during the summer with a few changes. No need to add garlic since ramps are a member of the Allium family tasting like a cross between garlic and onions. Once you have the pesto you have many ways to enjoy your wild ramps. Here are a few ideas:

  1. top your favorite pasta with pesto along with a little more grated parmesan cheese
  2. top a piece of grilled chicken, fish or beef with pesto
  3. top grilled bread with some fresh ricotta cheese and pesto
  4. add a spoonful of pesto to your salad vinaigrette
  5. add a spoonful to 1/2 a cup of good quality mayonnaise to use for sandwiches
  6. put a little pesto in an omelette
  7. add a spoonful to a favorite soup such as minestrone

Get creative and enjoy!

From by the bay wishing you wild ramp filled food memories!

Maryann

ramp

noun

  1. Allium tricoccum is a North American species of wild onion widely known as ramps and/or wild leeks. An early spring perennial, ramps have smooth light green leaves, that might have touches of burgundy or purple on the lower stem. They resemble scallion stalks and bulbs.

Ramps, like onions and garlic are an excellent source of vitamin A and C and some of their health benefits include healthy skin, teeth and bones, as well as promote healthy eyesight.

Spring Wild Ramp Pesto

Ingredients

  • 1 bunch of ramps
  • 1/2 cup walnuts (toasted)
  • 1/2 cup, you kind of have to eyeball it)
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Directions

 

Boil salted water in a medium saute pan. Wash and cut off the bottom roots of the ramps. Blanche the ramp in boiling water until the leaves turn bright green, 10 to 20 seconds. Place in cold water to cool. Remove from water and pat dry. Add chopped walnuts, cheese, lemon juice, salt and 1/4 cup olive and process until well combined. Slowly pour remaining olive oil to combine. Place in a covered glass jar. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use. Serve at room temperature.

 

Charred Spicy Sugar Snap Peas

Here is a wonderful side dish that celebrates some  of my favorite flavors – fresh sugar snap peas, sauteed until they start to brown , adding heat from using rounds of thai red chiles cooled by the use of some fresh chopped mint! It’s a perfect dish and simple to prepare. Enjoy!

From by the bay, wishing you sugar snap food memories!

Maryann

blog charred sugar snaps

Charred Spicy Sugar Snap Peas

Ingredients

1 pound sugar snap peas

1 red thai chile, sliced in small rounds or finely chopped

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon mint, chopped

fine sea salt

fresh ground black pepper

Directions

In a medium saute pan heat the olive oil, when it’s hot carefully add the sugar snap peas to the pan. Cook , stirring the sugar snap peas . When the peas start to soften add the thai chile and continue to saute until the sugar snap peas start to char and brown in places. Add sea salt and pepper to taste. Place in serving bowl and sprinkle with fresh mint.

Rhubarb Mojito

I love rhubarb and I love mojito’s so what better cocktail than this winning combination of two favorite tastes! A delicious simple syrup made with rhubarb not only infuses the  cocktail with the taste of rhubarb but it creates a beautiful pink hue to the beverage!  You’ll love kicking off your summer with this beverage in hand!

From by the bay wishing you, delicious rhubarb food memories!

Maryann

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Rhubarb Simple Syrup

Ingredients

4 cups fresh chopped rhubarb

lime rind

1 cup granulated sugar

1 cup water

Directions

In a medium saucepan combine sugar, water, rhubarb and rind. Bring to a boil, stirring, until sugar has dissolved and rhubarb has softened. Using a fine mesh sieve to strain. Allow to cool. Store in a glass jar in the refrigerator until ready to use. Will keep for one week.

Rhubarb Mojito

Ingredients

3 ounces rhubarb syrup

1 ounce lime juice

1 lime wedge

2 ounces white rum

5 mint leaves

1sprig mint

ice

sparkling water

Directions

Place mint leaves and 1 lime wedge into a sturdy glass. Use a muddler to crush the mint and lime to release the mint oils and lime juice. Add rhubarb simple syrup and lime juice, and muddle. Do not strain the mixture. Fill the glass almost to the top with ice. Pour the rum over the ice, and fill the glass with carbonated water. Stir. Garnish with the remaining mint. Enjoy!

Spring Pea Guacamole from ABC Cucina

This recipe combines some of the best aspects of Spring-  early spring peas and celebrating Cinco de Mayo. I, unfortunately, can’t take credit for this vibrant combination of spring peas and avocados, Chef Jean-George Vongerichten serves this incredible dish at ABC Cocina in New York. He fortunately shared this recipe with Tasting Table and I’m passing it along. The few extra steps to make this guacamole is well worth the extra work, as it rewards in it’s outstanding flavor. Celebrate the season and the holiday this week !

From by the bay, wishing you sweet green pea food memories!

Maryann

blog pea guacamole

Spring Pea Guacamole from ABC Cucina

Recipe adapted from Jean-Georges Vongerichten, ABC Cocina, New York City as seen on Tasting Table

INGREDIENTS

Ice

¾ cup shelled sweet peas

¼ cup fresh cilantro leaves, plus 1 tablespoon finely chopped

1 tablespoon sunflower seeds

1 medium jalapeño

1½ teaspoons kosher salt, divided

2 ripe avocados–halved, pitted and peeled

3 scallions, white parts only, thinly sliced crosswise

2 tablespoons finely grated lime zest, plus

¼ cup fresh lime juice (from about 2 limes)

Pinch sea salt

Tortilla chips, for serving
DIRECTIONS

1. Fill a large bowl with ice and water. To a medium saucepan of boiling water, add the peas and cook until tender, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the whole cilantro leaves and cook just long enough to wilt them, about 5 seconds. Strain both the peas and cilantro into a fine-mesh sieve and plunge the sieve into the ice water to stop the cooking. Once the peas are cool, transfer them to a paper-towel-lined plate to drain. Place the cilantro in a few layers of paper towels and wring dry.

2. To a skillet set over medium-high heat, add the sunflower seeds and toast until fragrant and golden-brown, about 1 minute. Transfer the sunflower seeds to a medium plate. To the skillet, add the whole jalapeño. Cook, using tongs to turn it often, until the jalapeño is charred, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer the chile to a small bowl, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and set aside for 5 minutes. Peel the charred skin from the jalapeño, remove the stem, halve the chile lengthwise and remove the seeds with the tip of a paring knife.

3. To the small bowl insert of a food processor (or using a small capacity food processor), add all but 2 tablespoons of the cooled peas, the blanched cilantro, the charred jalapeño and ½ teaspoon of the kosher salt. Pulse the mixture until it is coarsely chopped, about 20 one-second pulses. Transfer the pea mixture to a medium bowl.

4. To the peas, add the avocados, scallions, lime zest, lime juice and remaining 1 teaspoon kosher salt. Mash with a fork. Transfer to a serving bowl and sprinkle with the sunflower seeds, the remaining peas, the chopped cilantro and the pinch of sea salt. Serve with the tortilla chips.

Dill Veal Stew with Peas and Carrots

Enjoy the early days of Spring with this bright stew using veal with dill, peas and carrots. It’s the perfect dish using early spring vegetables from your garden or market!

From by the bay, wishing you dill filled spring memories!

Maryann

blog veal carrot pea stew

Dill Veal Stew with Peas and Carrots

Adapted from Silver Palate
Serves 6
Ingredients:
12 tablespoons (1 ½ sticks) unsalted butter
3 pounds boneless veal shoulder or shank, in 1-inch cubes
½ cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 scant teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg, plus additional to taste
1 ½ teaspoons salt, plus additional to taste
1 ½ teaspoons freshly ground black pepper, plus additional to taste
3 cups peeled carrots, sliced diagonally (1/8 thick)
3 cups coarsely chopped yellow onions
5 tablespoons finely chopped fresh dill
3 to 4 cups chicken stock
3/4 cup heavy cream or yogurt

optional: 2 cups frozen baby peas

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 F
2. Melt 8 tablespoons (1 stick) of butter in a heavy oven-proof casserole over medium-low heat. Add the veal and cook, turning frequently, without browning.
3. Stir 3 tablespoons flour, the nutmeg, salt, and pepper together in a small bowl, and sprinkle over the veal. Continue to cook over low heat, stirring, for 5 minutes. The flour and veal should not brown.
4. Add the carrots, onions, 3 tablespoons of the dill, and enough stock just to cover the meat and vegetables. Raise the heat to medium, bring to a boil, cover, and bake in the oven for 1 ½ hours.
5. Remove the stew from the oven and pour it through a strainer placed over a bowl. Reserve the solids and liquid separately.
6. Return the casserole to medium heat and melt the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter in it. Sprinkle in the remaining 5 tablespoons flour and cook over low heat, whisking constantly, for 5 minutes.
7. Whisk the reserved cooking liquid slowly into the butter and flour mixture and bring to a simmer. Cook slowly, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes.
8. Whisk in the cream and the remaining 2 tablespoons dill, and season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Return the veal and vegetables plus the frozen baby peas to the casserole and simmer together to heat through, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a deep serving dish and serve at once.

Luck of the Irish Soda Bread

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Although I’m not Irish, I have always enjoyed eating Irish Soda Bread.  St. Patrick’s Day is the unofficial start of Spring. After a long winter, you start to see the signs of spring. The crocus start peeking out of the ground, there is a big outdoor parade with lots of green the official color of spring and then there is Irish Soda Bread. I had some Irish good luck when my mother’s close friend Nancy, shared her family recipe with me. I find this bread pretty easy to make and quite forgiving in the preparation. Ready to celebrate Spring with some of your own good luck?

From by the bay wishing you some good luck food memories of your own!

Maryann

blog irish soda bread

Irish Soda Bread

Ingredients
3 1/2 cups flour, plus a tablespoon to mix with currants

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup unsalted butter

1 1/2 cups buttermilk

1 cup currants

1 tablespoon caraway seeds, optional

Directions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.

Combine the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, caraway seeds and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the butter and mix on low speed until the butter is mixed into the flour.

With a fork, lightly beat the buttermilk and egg together in a measuring cup. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the buttermilk mixture to the flour mixture. Combine the currants with 1 tablespoon of flour and mix into the dough. It will be very wet.

Dump the dough onto a well-floured board and knead it a few times into a round loaf. Place the loaf on the prepared sheet pan and lightly cut an X into the top of the bread with a serrated knife. Bake for 45 to 55 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. When you tap the loaf, it will have a hollow sound. Cool on a baking rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.

 blog shamrock

Buttermilk Pudding with Strawberry Rhubarb Compote

A sure way to welcome the bounty of spring is using the early rhubarb and strawberries in a delicious compote flavored with rich vanilla. This compote is the perfect topping for breakfast on top of pancakes, french toast or Greek yogurt or use the compote to complete desserts such as cake , ice cream or pudding.  I find the best match to this compote is this old fashion buttermilk pudding. The buttermilk pudding is slightly tart, creamy, smooth and rich. It’s the perfect balance to the tart and sweet compote.  You can also enjoy this pudding on its own or just topped with fresh berries.

From by the bay, wishing you creamy buttermilk food memories!

Maryann

 

blog buttermilk pudding

Buttermilk Pudding with Strawberry Rhubarb Compote

Serves 4 to 6

Serve the buttermilk pudding and top with the Strawberry Rhubarb Compote.  Recipes follow.

blog buttermilk pudding 2

Buttermilk Pudding

Ingredients
1 1/4-ounce envelope unflavored gelatin

1 cup heavy cream

2/3 cup sugar

2 cups buttermilk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

canola oil for the ramekins
Directions
Combine the gelatin with 1/4 cup water in a small bowl or measuring cup and let stand for 3 minutes. In a small saucepan, over medium heat, combine 1/2 cup of the cream and the sugar. Cook, stirring, until the sugar has dissolved. Remove from heat and whisk in the gelatin.
In a large bowl, combine the buttermilk, vanilla, and the remaining cream. Stir in the warm cream mixture.
Lightly oil six 6-ounce ramekins. Divide the mixture evenly among the ramekins. Refrigerate, covered, 3 hours or overnight. To serve, run a knife around the edge of each ramekin and invert onto plates.
Darienne Sutton
August 2007 in Real Simple

Strawberry Rhubarb Compote

 Ingredients

1 ¼ cups juice and/or water
½ cup  sugar
1/4 cup  agave nectar
1-pounds rhubarb, trimmed and cut into 1/4 –inch wide pieces
1 pound (450 g) strawberries, hulled and quartered
1 teaspoon vanilla and optional 1 teaspoon framboise

Directions
In a large, nonreactive saucepan, heat the water, juice, ginger, sugar, and agave. When all the sugar is dissolved and the syrup is simmering, add the rhubarb and let the rhubarb cook in the simmering syrup until it’s just softened, which may take as little as 5 minutes, depending on the rhubarb. Add the strawberries and  simmer another five minutes. Remove from heat and add the vanilla and  the framboise, if using. Cool and refrigerate until ready to use. Serve warm or room temperature.

 

 

 

Five Ways to Celebrate Spring

It’s been a very long winter, I’m so ready for spring! This is how I am celebrating Spring by the bay!

1. Enjoying the crocus I planted last year

blog spring 02

2. Putting bowls of lemons around the house

blog spring lemons

3. Planter filled with pansies on the front porch

blog spring planter

4. Bread, butter, baby radishes and sea salt!

blog spring radish appetizer

 

 

Simple Radish Crostini
Serves 4
Ingredients

2 fresh radishes
2 tablespoons salted butter
4 slices ciabatta bread
Coarse sea salt

Directons
Clean radishes and using a mandoline slice the radish into rounds. Keep radish slices in iced water until ready to use. In a 400F degree oven, place 4 slices of ciabatta bread on a baking sheet in the oven until the bread starts to brown, flip bread over and toast the other side, 2-3 mins per side. Let toasted ciabatta bread cool a little, then spread with the best salted butter you can buy. Take radish slices out of the water and dry with a paper towel before layering the rounds on top the bread and butter. Sprinkle with coarse sea salt and serve.

5. Fresh asparagus crostini – oh my!

blog aparagus crostini

 

Asparagus Puree with Lemon Ricotta Crostini
Serves 4
Ingredients

16 very thin asparagus spears or 8 asparagus thicker spears
2 tablespoons fresh mint
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest
¼ pound fresh ricotta cheese
4 tablespoons grated pecorino cheese
4 slices ciabatta bread toasted
Coarse sea salt
Fresh ground black pepper
Directions

Clean asparagus, remove the tender tips and place to the side. Snap off woody stems and discard. In to food processor add asparagus stalks broken into pieces and coarsely chop. Add the following to the asparagus: mint, olive oil, lemon juice and 2 tbs. grated pecorino. Pulse a few times. In a separate bowl combine the ricotta cheese, lemon zest salt and pepper. On hot toasted ciabatta bread layer the ricotta cheese, puree asparagus, grated pecorino cheese. Drizzle lightly with olive oil and add asparagus spear to the top.

Lemon Ice Box Pie

blog spring  ahead

It’s been a long winter and I’m ready to say enough. This past weekend we sprung ahead an hour and I’m ready to spring ahead myself. It started in the house, putting away the last remnants of winter decor in the house . i started to bring in a little color, filled a bowl in the kitchen with lemons and thought about making something that tasted and looked like spring. I found this recipe on the Food & Wine website and made it this past weekend. It was silky, cool and creamy with burst of tartness from the lemon contrasted with sweetness from the milk and sugar.  The color is of warm sunshine. Bring a little spring into your life with this delectable dessert!

From by the bay wishing you sunny and bright food memories!

Maryann

blog lemon ice box 1

Lemon Ice Box Pie
CONTRIBUTED BY DAVID GUAS
TOTAL TIME: 1 HR PLUS 7 HR COOLING AND FREEZING
SERVINGS: MAKES ONE 9-INCH PIE
MAKE-AHEAD
STAFF-FAVORITE
This silken frozen pie is adapted from Clancy’s, one of David Guas’s favorite New Orleans neighborhood restaurants. (Recipe adapted from DamGoodSweet.)

Ingredients

14 whole graham crackers, broken
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
Two 14-ounce cans sweetened condensed milk
1 1/4 cups fresh lemon juice, plus 2 tablespoons finely grated lemon zest
8 large egg yolks

Directions
Preheat the oven to 325°. In a food processor, pulse the graham crackers with the sugar and salt until finely ground but not powdery. Add the butter and pulse until the crumbs are evenly moistened; transfer to a 9-inch springform pan and press into the bottom and two-thirds up the side. Set the pan on a rimmed baking sheet.
In a medium bowl, whisk the condensed milk with the lemon juice. In another bowl, using a handheld mixer, beat the lemon zest with the egg yolks until pale. Beat in the condensed milk mixture until smooth. Pour the filling into the crust.
Bake the pie for 25 minutes, until the center jiggles slightly and the edges are set. Transfer the pan to a rack; let cool for 1 hour. Loosely cover the pan with plastic wrap and freeze the pie for at least 6 hours.
Wrap a warm, damp kitchen towel around the side of the springform pan to release the pie; remove the ring. Using a hot knife, slice the pie, transfer to plates and serve.

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Ricotta Strawberry Muffins

 

 

 

 

blog straw muf

My grandparents farm had lots of fresh strawberries to pick. The strawberries would rarely last long enough to bake . I would say the same holds true today. But if you do find yourself with some berries this is the perfect morning treat.  A moist muffin that is not too sweet. It’s the perfect start to a nice relaxing weekend morning!

From by the bay , wishing you berry food memories!

Maryann

Ricotta Strawberry Muffins
Makes 12 muffins

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup white sugar, plus extra tablespoon to sprinkle on top of muffins
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • 3/4 cup fresh ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup fresh strawberries, hulled and chopped

Directions
Preheat oven to 400 F. Take a 12 muffin pan and line with paper baking cups. Put tin to the side. In a bowl combine flour, 1/4 cup sugar, salt, baking powder, baking soda and lemon zest. Add melted butter, ricotta cheese and stir. Add the eggs to the buttermilk , mix and pour into the flour mixture and combine. Add strawberries, mix and then fill each muffin liner about 3/4 filled. sprinkle tops of muffins with remaining sugar. Place tin on baking sheet and bake on the center rack for 20 to 25 minutes until cake tester comes out clean. Cool 5 minutes then remove muffins to wire rack to cool. Serve warm or room temperature.

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