Spring is no slouch when it comes to its offering of harvests. Everything from chives to spruce tips, asparagus to morels, these spring recipes will help you make the most of the season.
It's the buildup to summer's plenty.
But spring harvests are no space-filling stop gap until tree fruits and tomatoes — and nearly everything else that flourishes in July's heat — hit farm stands. Spring is all about fresh, especially after months of eating root vegetables and squash, starchy carbs and all those comfort foods.
The first signs of green are more than mouth-watering. They're invigorating, waking up our taste buds and rejuvenating us in the kitchen. Whether it's those early birds green garlic and chives, perennial favourits asparagus and rhubarb, or cold weather greens and the newest shoots on our spruce trees, spring's bounty is, well, bountiful.
These 22 spring recipes are just a small sampling of spring's smorgasbord.
Spruce tips taste like a cross between rosemary and hops. If you want to give them a go, these Pickled Spruce Tips by Well Preserved are a great place to start. They give you lots of pointers on how to pick your own spruce tips — you have to get the timing right — and ways you can use them in the kitchen.
Morel mushrooms are a spring delicacy but one that you'll usually only find in local farmers markets. If you do find them, you'll want to try this Easy Morel Pasta by Bacon is Magic. Just remember, for safety reasons morels must be cooked before eating.
Most of us are very comfortable cooking with the green stems from chives but those vibrant purple flowers are also edible and what better way to showcase them than with this stunning Chive Blossom Vinegar by Nutmeg Disrupted. The finished product will have a sweet onion flavour that's a wonderful addition to homemade salad dressings.
This Creamy Chive Dumpling Soup by Shifting Roots is a simple, budget-friendly soup that makes short work of spring chives. It's a hearty meal that will fuel you enough to get back outside in your garden.
Lemon Chive Yogurt Cheese by Making Healthy Choices will take a little planning. You'll need at least 24 hours of lead time but it will result in a creamy, spring flavoured cheese-like spread that you can slather on toast or crackers, or use as a dip for fresh veggies.
Sorrel is an early spring herb with lemony flavour that's lovely in salads and this fresh Sorrel Pesto by West Coast Kitchen Garden. She uses hazelnuts as her base and adds some parmesan. You can whip this up quickly to use as an easy spring pasta topping or fresh dip for patio appetizers.
This fresh Spring Pea and Arugula Salad by Vikalinka can be made with arugula or sorrel and includes other spring delights, including peas and radishes. It's topped with an addictive, creamy dill dressing you will have you going back for more.
People all across Canada anxiously await the all-too-brief moment in spring when fresh fiddleheads are available. But you can prolong their time in your kitchen by making these Pickled Fiddleheads by Crumb. As always, make sure you properly clean and cook raw fiddleheads for the appropriate amount of time before consuming.
Most of us are familiar with the spicy crunch of a fresh radish but have you ever cooked with them? Roasting radishes tones down that spicy heat just a little bit and highlights their sweetness as well. They're a lovely addition to these Roasted Veggies with Lemon Brown Butter by My Sweet Mess.
It's not rhubarb seasons until you've made a crisp or crumble. This Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp by Chef Sous Chef adds a little extra flavour with cinnamon and ginger and is topped with a crisp oat biscuit topping.
Blanket your morning toast with this zesty Rhubarb Orange Butter by Urban Cottage Life. It's a perfect addition to your brunch table but also makes a great topping for desserts.
If you love lemon curd this Rhubarb Curd by Kelly Neil is a must-try. It's sweet and tart and oh so creamy. It's ideal on toast, or to top yogurt or ice cream. For a special treat, spread it in between the layers of a special spring cake.
Sorbet is a fantastic vehicle for rhubarb. Its tart flavour shines beautifully in Chef Heidi Fink's perfectly pink Rhubarb Sorbet is one to try.
These Fresh Rhubarb Muffins by Little Sweet Baker are loaded with chunks of fresh rhubarb and a hint of vanilla. Top them with a sweet sugar topping to balance rhubarb's tang. Even better, they're ready in just 15 minutes. You could be snacking on these just minutes from now.
This Spring Asparagus & Gouda Omelette by Julia's Cuisine will have you looking forward to waking early. It looks fancy but it's simple and quick, and full of flavour with fresh spring asparagus, melted Gouda and spring onions on top.
Spring's warm weather inspires many of us to lighten our meals. This warm Roasted Asparagus with Egg and Parmesan Salad by Maple + Mango checks that box with roasted asparagus teamed up with oozy bright yellow egg yolks and shaved parmesan with a sprinkling of pine nuts.
Andre's Asparagus by Kitchen Bliss is the creation of Chef Andre Donnet and also goes by the name of Asparagus Mimosa with Red Pepper Emulsion and Goat Cheese. This is another warm salad that combines layers of texture and flavour for a beautiful dish.
White asparagus is a little harder to find than its green cousins but if you can get your hands on some it's worth it just so you can make this White Asparagus Soup. White asparagus has a unique flavour that's both sweet and a touch bitter. This soup is ridiculously simple and uses few ingredients but it results in a silky, comforting concoction that's a seasonal favourite.
Tarragon is an ideal accompaniment to asparagus and Asparagus with Brown Butter Vinaigrette takes advantage of this pairing. And what doesn't taste better with brown butter? It's the base of the vinaigrette tops off this dish for a little spring perfection.
Nova Scotia Hodge Podge by Bacon is Magic is Maritime dish that uses all that's available in spring: new potatoes, baby carrots fresh out of the ground and spring peas. The veggies are so young they don't need peeling before they're bathed in cream and butter. Some cooks will add a little bit of fish or bacon for extra flavour and heft in the dish.
Risotto is a delicious way to showcase spring veggies like asparagus and spring peas. Try this Pea Barley Risotto by SugarLoveSpices for a twist on the traditional versions made with arborio rice. It still has the same creamy texture you expect with sweet, fresh peas as the star and finished with butter and Parmigiano.
Snap Pea Salad with Goat's Feta by Dish 'n' the Kitchen is an easy spring side dish or salad that features snap peas, briny goat feta, earthy mint and bright lemon zest. It's a fresh, citrusy salad with the saltiness of the feta teaming up nicely with the sweetness of the snap peas. It's bound to be a favourite in your side dish repertoire.