Local eaters everywhere heaved a sigh at the beginning of this month. It's not that we don't love potatoes and crucifers, it's just that after months of patiently waiting, spring has sprung, and variety has begun to hit the stands of our favorite farmers markets. Here are three of our very favorite March ingredients as well as some great ways to use them to welcome this delicious spring produce!
While it's technically a vegetable--it's actually related to buckwheat--rhubarb is often prepared as a fruit, paired with strawberries later in the season. Now, however, even though strawberries still have a way to go, rhubarb is starting to pop up, as one of the first crops to be available in temperate climates. You can recognize outdoor cultivated rhubarb due to its paler color; hothouse rhubarb is often the first to become available and is usually brighter in color.
Use rhubarb in sweet and savory recipes; here are some of our favorites, sans out-of-season strawberries:
- Slow cooked pork shoulder with tangy rhubarb and reisling
- Rhubarb and vanilla jam
- Rhubarb pie
- Fizzy rosemary rhubarb cocktail
Arugula is a delicious, peppery green. It's one of the first "salad" greens to come into season, mainly because it's not actually salad at all! While it's often tossed with other lettuces, arugula is actually a member of the cabbage family. Arugula lends a bit of peppery bite to salads, but it can also be whizzed into a pesto, before basil comes into the market.
Here are some of our very favorite ways to use arugula:
- Grass-fed beef sandwiches with caramelized onions, horseradish cream and arugula
- Portabellas with arugula and parmigiano
- Brown butter tortelli with arugula
- Arugula salad with blue cheese, walnuts and cranberries
3. Spring Onion
Aptly named, spring onions starts to appear at the beginning of spring. A great number of varieties, from scallions, which are milder, to green and spring onions, which have a more pronounced, oniony flavor, will begin to become available. Consider taking advantage of these new onions by using them in recipes that put them at an advantage:
- Spring onion pulao
- White cheddar puffs with green onions
- Fast scallion pancakes
- Linguine with creamy scallion pesto