Spring Recipes A New Start

Spring Recipes

If we are lucky the cold temperatures have risen a little, the soil is waking up. A new dawn is beginning with the fruit and veg that grows. If you are lucky enough to live near an allotment then visit the Gardners there. Often they grow to much and sell the unwanted vegetables

I will be adding recipes hints and tips so you get the best value for money on the freshest produce for the season. So please pop back as this is an ongoing project for Cheap Dinner Ideas.

Asparagus

Lettuces

fresh spring asparagus

Asparagus

The asparagus season is very short in the UK, (April to May) although you can usually buy imported asparagus in the supermarket all the time. However, we don’t think it tastes as good as our homegrown variety.

Nice wrapped in parma ham and maybe a little hollandaise sauce. Great cooked then allowed to cool and add to salads. My favourite is cooked in butter and lemon juice with a good seasoning of salt and pepper.

The firmer bottom parts of the asparagus can be frozen and then used in soups.

Watercress

Hot peppery and great on a pastrami sandwich with a good grind of salt to bring out the flavour of the watercress. Another food group that divides people, you either love it or can’t stand the stuff. Of course it’s great to give flavour to salads such as, pea, hammock salad, but what else can you do with these peppery little leaves.

One such classic is a soup, watercress and blue cheese. Great with croutons to give texture or bake some cashew crumbed puff pastry to dip into. Also great for garnishing soups like tomato. It can also be used to make a peppery homemade mayonnaise with a vibrant green tinge.

A classic recipe would be smoke trout with watercress and beetroot with a horseradish dressing. (horseradish from a jar mixed with plain yoghurt) Or to garnish a ham hock soup.

Brussels sprouts are not just for Christmas

Brussel Sprouts

It seems you either love Brussel sprouts or hate them, my eldest daughter can eat them by the plateful. I guess its because they are usually overcooked and soggy. Brussel sprouts cooked correctly bring amazing flavours to the table .

Great with bacon and chestnuts, pistachios and pomegranate or roasted garlic and parmesan. Also great with hazelnut and orange butter. They can also be deep fried so they give a lovely crispy texture,

They also go great with salads like, pear, bacon, pecan with a maple dressing. Just think differently about sprouts.

spring Savoy cabbage

Savoy Cabbage

I love Savoy cabbage and it can be used in so many dishes. Yes it goes well with bacon, actually any green vegetable goes well with bacon, or even chorizo. They can be braised and stuffed with rice or ground meats. Used in soups to give a little more texture and great for using in stir fry’s.

Sliced into wedges, then roasted in olive oil and lemon juice , zest. Also good with linguine and anchovies for a big flavour kick.

Creamed cabbage with smoked pancetta has to be one of my favourites and I could eat it with anything, especially duck.

spring lettuce

Lettuces Spring Greens

In spring there are so many different types salad greens available with a variety of flavours. From subtle fresh and crispy to hot peppery leaves that dance across the the tongue. I like texture to my salads, such as croutons toasted nuts and different varieties of leaves.

Goats cheese, beetroot and pomegranate molasses is an amazing combination, not got molasses then add orange juice and oil. Salads can be a combination of so many different ingredients.

Greek salads with feta and cucumber, Nicosia salad with tuna, tomatoes and boiled egg. The possibilities are endless.

Vegetables Available in Spring

  • asparagus
  • Brussels sprouts
  • cabbage (savoy)
  • carrot
  • cauliflower
  • cucumber
  • lettuce
  • onion
  • parsley (flat -leaf)
  • purple sprouting broccoli
  • radish
  • red onion
  • rhubarb
  • PeasMacho Peas


Jersey Royal New Potatoes
Sorrel
Spinach
Spring Onion

Rhubarb should now be sprouting from the ground, (ours is) awakening as the air warms the soil. At first we did not appreciate the rhubarb growing in our garden and gave it away if we remembered it was there. Not now as even the kids will happily sit with a bag of sugar and dip in the fresh rhubarb stalks in. I guess what made me appreciate it more was when I fancied making a rhubarb and cherry pie and I went to the shops to buy some. Well I nearly fell of the flour at the price of rhubarb, so we didn’t have the pie that day. Grow your own, its simple plant and pick. Rhubarb needs to planted in full sun but will tolerate partial shade in a warm garden. Full growing advice 

Summer is Coming Get ready with our Summer Recipes