Recipes for Early Spring


adapted from

  • 1 bunch medium width asparagus (about 1 pound)
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Fill a medium saucepan halfway with lightly salted water. Bring to a boil. Prepare the asparagus while the water is heating. Rinse them thoroughly. Break off any tough bottoms and discard. Cut the spears into 1- to 2-inch sections, slicing the asparagus at a slight diagonal. Add the cut asparagus to the boiling water and lower the heat slightly to maintain a simmer. Parboil the asparagus for 2 minutes, no longer. Drain. Toss the asparagus with the olive oil, parmesan, and lemon zest while still hot. Add salt and pepper to taste and can either serve warm or room temperature.


From Taste of Home February/March 2008

  • 1 tube (8 ounces) refrigerated crescent rolls
  • 2 teaspoons mustard
  • 1-1/2 pounds fresh asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 medium onion, chopped (or 1 bunch scallions!)
  • 1/2 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup butter, cubed
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon each dried basil, oregano and rubbed sage

Separate crescent dough into eight triangles; place in an ungreased 9-in. pie plate with points toward the center. Press onto the bottom and up the sides to form a crust; seal perforations. Spread with mustard; set aside. In a large skillet, sauté the asparagus, onion and mushrooms in butter until asparagus is slightly tender. In a large bowl, combine the remaining ingredients; stir in asparagus mixture. Pour into crust. Bake at 375° for 25-30 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Let stand for 10 minutes before cutting. Yield: 8 servings. 


by Florence Fabricant, NY Times Cooking

  • 2 ounces fresh pea shoots (3 cups)
  • 1 large clove garlic
  • Salt to taste
  • 3 tablespoons butter or olive oil, or a mixture
  • ½ pound bow-tie pasta
  • 4 ounces mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 ounce prosciutto, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese, plus additional cheese for the table
  • Freshly ground black pepper

If the pea shoots have long stems, cut them into pieces. Set aside. Mash the garlic with a pinch of salt to form a paste. Mix with the butter or oil. Heat a large pot of salted water for the pasta. Heat 2 tablespoons of the garlic butter or oil in a large, heavy skillet. Add the mushrooms and sauté over medium heat for a few minutes, until the mushrooms have wilted. Stir in the prosciutto, cook another few seconds, then remove from the heat. When the water has come to a boil, add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain the pasta and add it to the skillet. Return the skillet to the heat. Add the pea shoots along with the remaining garlic butter or oil, and cook over medium heat, stirring, for a minute or two, until the pea shoots have just wilted and the ingredients are well mixed. Add the cheese, season with salt and pepper, and serve at once.


Adapted from

  • 3 cups rhubarb, sliced about 1/2-inch thick
  • 1 cup rice vinegar, apple cider vinegar, champagne vinegar, or white balsamic
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • a few sprigs of tarragon, rosemary, or other herb (ginger works well too!), optional

Place the sliced rhubarb in a heat-safe mixing bowl. Heat the vinegar and sugar in a small saucepan over medium-high heat until the sugar has dissolved. Add the herb of choice (optional). If you would like crunchier pickled rhubarb, remove the liquid mixture from heat and let cool for about a minute. (if like softer pickled rhubarb, don’t wait for it to cool) Pour mixture over the rhubarb and cover with a plate or a pot lid to keep the rhubarb fully submerged in the liquid. Let the rhubarb cool to room temperature. Transfer to a jar and store in the refrigerator. Pickled rhubarb keeps for several weeks in the refrigerator and the flavor intensives over time. Recipe makes about 1 quart.


adapted from

  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2-1/4 cups sliced fresh rhubarb
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon or orange zest (optional)
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg (optional)
  • Cake/vanilla ice cream/pancakes/biscuits/yogurt/or whatever you want to have this on!

In a small saucepan, bring sugar and water to a boil. Add rhubarb and maintain a simmer and consistently stir until rhubarb is tender and mixture is slightly thickened depending on how much water is in your rhubarb can take 5-15 minutes. Remove from the heat; stir in zest of choice and nutmeg if desired. Serve warm or chilled over a cake/ice cream/ yogurt or whatever you desire! Refrigerate leftovers.