Spring Produce Guide
It’s spring and every farmer’s market visit has been feeling like I’ve come upon a treasure chest; SO many green things popping up at the stands. We talked last time about why eating seasonally is important and I wanted to take you through some of the highlights of spring produce and why you should run to your nearest market to stock up:
Strawberries: Rich in antioxidants, strawberries are one of the first red fruits to burst in at springtime. Perfectly ripe strawberries are wonderful raw or they can be added to smoothies or tossed with stewed rhubarb and a little maple syrup to top oatmeal. Because strawberries have such a thin skin, this is a fruit that is especially sensitive to pesticides and should be eaten organic.
Asparagus: High in folate and potassium and a good source of vitamin A, B6 and C. It is also full of fiber and will give you a wide range of nutrients for overall good health. My favorite preparation is to toss with olive oil and roast at 400’ for about 8-10 minutes and then finish with a squeeze of lemon before serving.
Peas: Spring peas are a category apart from steamed frozen peas. Peas are packed with nutrition and are especially high in vitamin C and K. They also have quite a bit of protein. They can be tossed with butter, shallots and mint for an easy side. Sugar snap peas can be briefly blanched and then thinly sliced for a slaw.
Green Garlic: Green garlic, also known as spring garlic, is none other than immature garlic picked in early spring before it has a chance to turn into a bulb and separate into cloves. It is fragrant and garlicky without being overpowering. As part of the allium family (along with onions, leeks, etc), it is anti-microbial and helps promote proper gut flora.Try this recipe!
Spinach (and additional greens like arugula): It’s a leafy green fest right now! I chose to feature spinach here just because it has an incredible profile of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin A, C, E and K, B vitamins, calcium, magnesium, iron, manganese and potassium. It is incredibly high in antioxidants and easy to eat raw or sauteed. Add a handful to a smoothie for added nutrition!