2 Easy Ways to Savor Spring Produce
Joy Johnson, Master Gardener
If you subscribe to the notion and practice of seasonal eating, as I do, then you already know: nothing in the world tastes as good as freshly picked asparagus. There is no replicating the bold bite of a turnip just plucked from the dirt. Spring is a wonderful time to eat, and its abundant leaves, stalks, bulbs and shoots in peak season and at their most flavorful require very little fussing in the kitchen.
It’s early spring and you may have some early spring veggies coming up in your garden; or, like me, you may still be in the “hopeful” stage. If you are blessed to have an asparagus patch or if you froze some turnips or have some in cold storage, it’s time to enjoy them!
If you don’t have either of these on hand, they are readily available this time of year in your local grocery store, probably at a reasonable price because they are in season.
These recipes, if you can even call them that, are very simple and quick. I hope you enjoy the fresh new flavors as much as I did when prepping for this article.
Make a salty-sweet glaze: Trim and cut turnips to bit size, then boil in salted water until just tender, 5 minutes.
Drain and return to pot along with a couple tablespoons each honey and butter, and 1 tablespoon each of miso and vinegar. I used one pack of red miso soup mixed with 1 tablespoon water. Cook until the glaze thickens enough to coat the turnips. Season with salt and pepper.
Blanch trimmed asparagus in salted simmering water until just tender, about 6 minutes. Toss with a grainy mustard vinagrette (i.e. mix 1 tablespoon brown mustard into 1/3 cup of whatever bottled vinagrette dressing you have on hand). Force a peeled hard boiled egg through a sieve or potato ricer to garnish.
Photo Credit: Joy Johnson (1,2,3,4)