Is it just us, or has this winter seemed particularly long and particularly gloomy?
Either way, the arrival of spring can’t come quickly enough! The warmer weather and brighter evenings reduces both the urge to hibernate, and to consume the most hearty and filling of meals.
Here’s a taster of what will be in season this spring and over the next few months. This post will subsequently address the perfect dishes that you can create from the comfort of your own kitchen.
A great source of antioxidants, the artichoke is a fantastic addition to any dish and can offer a more exciting alternative to your average side of greens. In season from March to May, it is an extremely versatile vegetable, with both the leaves and heart each offering something different. Andy McLeish uses baby globe artichokes as the perfect finishing touch to his luxurious beef wellington.
Coming into season in April, celeriac can provide a delicious and healthy twist on potato. When mashed, it has a creamy texture, while retaining its characteristic root-vegetable flavour. This steak, thyme and onion pie benefits from a celeriac mash topping in place of traditional potato.
Similar to spinach, but with a more distinctive and some would say bitter flavour, chard is a great addition to a variety of spring dishes. We love the amount of greenery in this aromatic stir-fry. The inclusion of, not only chard, but sugar snap peas, French beans, mangetout and spinach, will mean you won’t be in danger of missing out on your five-a-day.
The elusive morel mushroom has a honeycomb-like cap and a distinct earthy flavour. A favourite of wild mushroom hunters, it is so difficult to find that it has become something of a competitive sport. If you do manage to scavenge some yourself, add them to this tasty spin on a classic lasagne.
Catch the Savoy Cabbage in early Spring for the vegetable at its absolute best. Although a winter cabbage and able to be grown in the harshest of conditions, it flourishes when grown in sunlight. Ross Lewis’s recipe for braised top rib of prime Hereford beef uses a whole Savoy cabbage with the core removed as a perfectly crisp accompaniment to the dish.