Signs of spring are all around us—warmer weather, chirping birds, and the bountiful produce we all love! From dandelion greens and strawberries, to lavender and fresh flowers, the spring’s harvest is a colorful rainbow full of flavorful fare.
Spring is right around the corner and we here at the restaurant can hardly wait. Not only does that mean that we can stop worrying about polar vortexes, but it also means we can finally eat all the spring produce we’ve been dreaming about since the start of the year. Think lots of fresh, bright green plates. Plus, rhubarb. Lots of rhubarb.
To get our selves excited for the start of the season, I began thinking up spring recipes. With pea shoots, ramps, rhubarb and white asparagus, I found more great recipes that we have room for on the menu — a wonderful problem to have. Naturally, I had to share. Enjoy, all the spring food porn you could have ever hoped for.
8 each 1/2″ thick slices baguette
extra-virgin olive oil
½ cup fresh whole milk ricotta
to taste sea salt
to taste freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup finely chopped green garlic
1 tbsp finely chopped mint leaves
1/2 tsp finely grated lemon zest
garnish pea shoots
½ each lemon
Preheat oven to 400 F. Lightly brush bagette slices with olive oil. Arrange on baking sheet. Bake in oven until golden brown on both sides, turning once, 12 to 15 minutes. Remove.
Combine ricotta, 1 tbsp oil, 1/2 tsp salt and black pepper in a bowl; mix well until light and fluffy. Stir in ramps, mint and lemon zest. Spread ricotta on baguette slices.
Orecchiette, Spring Peas, Pancetta & Pea Shoots
1 # orecchiette pasta
1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
6 ounces pancetta, finely diced
2 cups fresh english peas
1 each garlic clove, minced
1/2 tsp red chili flakes
1/4 cup butter, unsalted
1/2 cup vegetable stock
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 cups pea shoots, loosely packed
1/3 cup finely grated Pecorino Romano cheese, plus extra for garnish
2 tbsp finely chopped fresh mint
Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. Add orecchiette and cook until al dente according to package instructions. Drain.
While the pasta is cooking, heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add pancetta. Sauté until colored and lightly golden, about 3 minutes.
Transfer to a plate lined with a paper towel. Drain all but 1 tbsp fat from the skillet. Add fresh peas, garlic and red chili flakes. Sauté until fragrant, 1 minute.
Return pancetta to the pan. Add butter, stock, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat. Simmer until cream is slightly reduced and thickened, and peas are tender, about 8 to 10 minutes.
Remove from heat and add the orecchiette to the skillet. Stir to combine. Add the pea shoots, half of the cheese and mint and stir again. Serve immediately with additional cheese for garnish.
Salmon Cakes, Poached Eggs, Ramps & Wilted Spinach
1 1/2 # potatoes, quartered
1 # fresh salmon fillet, skinned and bones removed
1 1/2 tsp fresh chives, chopped
1 tsp fresh flat leaf parsley, chopped
2 tbsp flour
to taste kosher Salt
to taste freshly ground black pepper
6-8 tbsp canola oil
5 cups clean spinach
¾ cup fresh ramps, washed and chopped
1 tbsp white vinegar
7 each whole eggs
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Cook the potatoes in a pot of boiling water until tender, drain and cool.
Chop the salmon into small pieces.
Once the potatoes are cool, put them in a large bowl and mash them with the back of a fork.
Add the chopped salmon, fresh herbs, salt and pepper and mix well.
Using the flour to rub on your hands, divide the mixture into four ounce balls.
Form each ball into a patty shape and gently flatten. Transfer to a baking tray and refrigerate for one hour. Heat the oil in a non-stick pan or skillet until hot. Cook the fish cakes 4-5 minutes each side and they become nice and golden.
Heat a large sauté pan over medium high heat and add oil. Put the ramps and spinach to the pan and cook until wilted, about 2-3 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Reserve warm.
Poach the eggs in a pot of simmering water with the vinegar for 3-4 minutes and still remain soft. Place a spoonful of ramp/spinach on each plate and top with a hot fish cake. Finally lay an egg on top of the fish cake.