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Seasonal Springtime Pizza

Seasonal Springtime Pizza

Asparagus, leek, goat cheese and prosciutto pizza

Spring weather has been gracing New York since February, and finally spring vegetables are here! Monday night I chose a few of the Springtime’s key offerings and put together a delicious and deceivingly simple dinner. We started with a salad of endives, radiccio, arugula and pecorino; and the main event was the pizza: an asparagus, leek, goat cheese and prosciutto pizza.

To make the pizza, I sliced one, whole leek – making use of both white and green – and sauteed half of it in olive oil for 12 minutes. Meanwhile, I broke off the ends of the asparagus spears and cut the edible parts in fourths. I then stuck the quartered asparagus in the microwave for one minute to cook through a bit. While the leeks continued to cook, I worked on the salad. When the first half of the leeks were done, I removed them fromt he heat and set aside, and sauteed the next half in the same pan, but this time I added a shower of balsamic vinegar. While this batch was cooking, I rolled my pizza dough out on a floured surface and finished the salad. By the time the second batch of leeks was done, I brushed the pizza dough with olive oil, spread all of the leeks onto the pizza, layered the asparagus on top, and sprinkled chunks of goat cheese all over the pizza. When the pizza had cooked for about 11 minutes in the oven, I removed it and added the prosciutto, and then cooked it for one more minute. So easy, so good!

Notes

You can omit the prosciutto for a vegetarian meal, and switch up the cheese to pecorinno, parmesian or mozerella if you choose!

Ingredients

  • 1 Leek
  • 6 Asparagus Spears
  • 8 Ounces Goat Cheese
  • 4 Ounces Prosciutto
  • 1 Pizza Dough
  • 2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Our 38 Best Vegetarian Recipes for the Spring

William Hereford

After a long cold winter, it’s hard not to get excited about spring’s bounty of fresh produce. With asparagus, artichokes, ramps, morels, peas, and more readily available, there’s no better season to eat vegetarian food.

Woodsy morel mushrooms are delicious in spaghetti, sautéed with mint and peas, or served with tofu skin in a pungent black bean chile sauce. Our best ramp recipes deploy the mildly onion-y herbs in a seasonal escabeche and as a base for pizza. Then there’s fresh asparagus—simply toss the stalks in a skillet with butter, salt, and pepper to let their flavor shine. Asparagus slices cured in honey and lemon juice make a wonderful topping for a creamy macadamia gazpacho. Spring peas in pea recipes are wonderful for adding a pop of sweetness to virtually any dish. Along with asparagus, carrots, fennel, and spring onions, they create a vibrant barigoule.

It’s easy being green with easy spring recipes. Whether you’re sticking to easy spring salad recipes or testing your cooking chops with spring pastas and spring soup recipes, we’ve got you covered here.

Gujarati Spring Vegetables

Though it is typically made with root vegetables, come spring, Heena Patel likes to put a bright seasonal spin on the southern Gujarati vegetable dish undhiyu.Get the recipe for Gujarati Spring Vegetables »

Grilled Halloumi and Cherry Salad

The sweetness of cherries balances the saltiness of halloumi in this simple summer salad, perfect for a side or a main dish. Get the recipe for Grilled Halloumi and Cherry Salad »

Turkish Stuffed Eggplant (Imam Bayildi)

This recipe originated in the Ottoman palaces. Use small eggplants for a better eggplant-to-stuffing ratio, since the key is to bake as much vegetable and tomato flavor into the eggplant as possible. Feel free to play around with the filling: swap in vegetables like sweet corn or zucchini for a seasonal twist. Turkish Stuffed Eggplant (Imam Bayildi) »

Radish and Cilantro Salad with Goat Cheese

In this simple Japan-meets-California salad, radishes are tossed with cilantro and a fragrant rice vinegar and soy sauce vinaigrette before topped with goat cheese. Get the recipe for Radish and Cilantro Salad with Goat Cheese »

Barigoule of Spring Vegetables

Crisp spring vegetables pair with a flavorful, vanilla-scented broth in this Provençal classic. Get the recipe for Barigoule of Spring Vegetables »

Morels with Mint, Peas, and Shallot

Richard Kuo of New York City’s Pearl & Ash uses preserved lemon, a Moroccan staple, to brighten this simple spring dish. Get the recipe for Morels with Mint, Peas, and Shallot »

Persian Kuku Sabzi

A classic Persian herb-loaded egg dish with the fragrant lift of rose petals. Get the recipe for Persian Kuku Sabzi »

Soba Salad with Lemon-Miso Vinaigrette

This refreshing salad of soba noodles tossed with winter greens and mixed vegetables is brought together by a tart dressing of miso, ginger juice, and lemon. Get the recipe for Soba Salad with Lemon-Miso Vinaigrette »

Spinach, Chive, and Yogurt Soup with Grilled Scallions

Morels in Black Bean Sauce with Fried Enoki Mushrooms

Morels are paired with pieces of yuba, or tofu skin, to soak up a pungent black bean chile sauce to create this rich, flavorful almost-stew. Get the recipe for Morels in Black Bean Sauce with Fried Enoki Mushrooms »

Watercress Ricotta Torte

Packed with grassy, spicy watercress and plenty of cheese, this frittata-like tart works wonders at brunch. Get the recipe for Watercress Ricotta Torte »

Spaghettini with Carrots, Olives, and Red Endive

Carrot ribbons cooked al dente and lightly braised red endive add color to this simple vegetable-packed pasta dish, brightened with lots of lemon zest. Josita Hartanto of Berlin’s Lucky Leek uses multicolored carrots for a beautiful presentation. Get the recipe for Spaghettini with Carrots, Olives, and Red Endive »

Puntarelle and Dandelion Green Salad with Honey and Olive Vinaigrette

Dandelion greens and sturdy, slightly bitter puntarelle (an Italian chicory) stand up to honey-mustard vinaigrette in this assertive spring salad. Get the recipe for Puntarelle and Dandelion Green Salad with Honey and Olive Vinaigrette »

Shaved Carrot Tart with Ricotta

Piles of colorful carrot ribbons—which skew more savory than sweet, thanks to a lemony coriander-flecked dressing—come out of the oven glistening and retaining some of their bite. The keys to the couldn’t-be-flakier crust beneath: keeping the ingredients as cold as possible, and not overhandling the dough. Leftovers of the tart can be refrigerated and recrisped in the oven the next day. Get the recipe for Shaved Carrot Tart with Ricotta »

Buckwheat and Ricotta Gnocchi with Cream, Peas, and Spinach

Buckwheat flour gives this gnocchi weightiness and an earthy flavor that pairs perfectly with a spring mix of peas and spinach. Get the recipe for Buckwheat and Ricotta Gnocchi with Cream, Peas, and Spinach »

Iceberg Wedge with Lemon-Parsley Dressing

Chilled Macadamia Gazpacho with Cured Asparagus

Sweet macadamia nuts, toasted to deepen their flavor, give a creamy base to this creative chilled gazpacho with asparagus. Get the recipe for Chilled Macadamia Gazpacho with Cured Asparagus »

Pizza with Ramps, Morels, and Eggs

This pizza, which pairs mellow, earthy morels, with oniony ramps, sharp Parmesan cheese, and just-set eggs. Get the recipe for Pizza with Ramps, Morels, and Eggs »

Grilled Calçots and Asparagus with Romesco Sauce

Chef José Andrés likes to cook these calçots, here served with asparagus, in the traditional manner: in a newspaper. The newspaper traps in steam from the cooling calçots, making them more tender and soaking up any excess oil. These tender Spanish green onions, always served with Romesco sauce, are a classic springtime treat. Get the recipe for Grilled Calçots and Asparagus with Romesco Sauce »

Jose Enrique’s Ramp Escabeche

Garlicky grilled ramps soak up the vinegary tang of the escabeche sauce, and because of the light pickling, can keep in a sealed jar in the fridge for up to two months. Get the recipe for Jose Enrique’s Ramp Escabeche »

Pea Shoot and Mint Pesto

This nontraditional pesto is one of the best ways to use up an overload of pea shoots. Packed with mint and spread atop toast or beneath a burger, it will make anything you pair it with taste fresher and greener. Get the recipe for Pea Shoot and Mint Pesto »

Olive-Oil Poached Green Almonds with Dill

Green almonds are a rare spring treat simmering them in olive oil, orange juice, and aromatics mitigates their slightly bitter exterior, making them an irresistible cocktail party snack. Get the recipe for Olive-Oil Poached Green Almonds with Dill »

Skillet Asparagus

Cooking asparagus in the skillet concentrates its flavor rather than diluting it, as steaming or boiling can. Get the recipe for Skillet Asparagus »

Morel and Asparagus Spaghetti

In this bright spring pasta dish of morels, asparagus, and cream, dried morels are rehydrated in boiling water that is then used to cook spaghetti, infusing the pasta with an earthy, mushroomy flavor. Get the recipe for Morel and Asparagus Spaghetti »

Artichokes and Fava Beans (Aginares Me Koukia)

Tender artichoke hearts and fava beans pair beautifully in this simple Greek side dish. Get the recipe for Artichokes and Fava Beans (Aginares Me Koukia) »

Fresh Peas With Lettuce and Green Garlic

This side dish from Andrea Reusing’s Cooking in the Moment: A Year of Seasonal Recipes (Clarkson Potter, 2011) is the essence of summer: emerald green vegetables cooked together briefly, until their flavors just meld. Get the recipe for Fresh Peas With Lettuce and Green Garlic »

Leek Terrine with Goat Cheese

The striking geometry of this terrine—an elegantly simple pairing of leeks and goat cheese—makes for a visually arresting presentation. We like it served with dark pumpernickel bread and some briny cured salmon at brunch, or as part of a cheese plate with a casual dinner. Get the recipe for Leek Terrine with Goat Cheese »

Butter Lettuce Salad with Pistachios and Orange Crème Fraîche Dressing

A simple salad pairs end-of-season citrus with fresh butter lettuce topped with pistachios. Get the recipe for Butter Lettuce Salad with Pistachios and Orange Crème Fraîche Dressing »

Roasted Artichokes (Carciofi Arrostiti)

Though traditionally cooked in embers, these artichokes are equally as succulent when oven-roasted. Get the recipe for Roasted Artichokes (Carciofi Arrostiti) »

Sweet Pea Gnocchi

These airy potato pillows get an infusion of color and flavor from sweet peas and fresh mint before being coated in a lemon and herb cream sauce. Get the recipe for Sweet Pea Gnocchi »

Braised Artichokes

Earthy and tender, these artichokes are a favorite antipasto at Frankies Spuntino restaurants in New York City. Get the recipe for Braised Artichokes »

Six-Onion Pizza

This sweet and savory pizza showcases the flavor of six kinds of onion. Get the recipe for Six-Onion Pizza »

Fava Bean Soup (Sopa de Habas)

The secret to this soup is a flavorful aromatic base of tomatoes, garlic, and onions—called a recado—that is pureed and fried before the beans go into the pot. Get the recipe for Fava Bean Soup (Sopa de Habas) »

Pasta with Grilled Artichokes

Baby artichokes, dressed with olive oil and garlic, take center stage in this lemony dish. Get the recipe for Pasta with Grilled Artichokes »

Brown Butter, Peas, and Mint Omelette

Rich, nutty brown butter perfectly offsets the fresh flavor of sweet peas and mint. Get the recipe for Brown Butter, Peas, and Mint Omelette »

Vegetable Ragout with Pesto (Ragout De Legumes Au Pistou)

Pairing pistou, an herb sauce made with fresh basil, with tender spring vegetables makes for a bright-tasting seasonal entree. Get the recipe for Vegetable Ragout with Pesto (Ragout De Legumes Au Pistou) »

Espàrrecs Amb Vinagreta (Catalan Asparagus Vinaigrette)

A deceptively simple vinaigrette of olive oil, white wine vinegar, chopped parsley, and crushed tomato transforms simple steamed asparagus into a sumptuous and well-turned-out dish—exactly what a great dressing should do. Get the recipe for Espàrrecs Amb Vinagreta (Catalan Asparagus Vinaigrette) »

Poireaux Vinaigrette (Marinated Leeks with Herbs)

The origins of leeks vinaigrette—poached leeks in a mustardy dressing—are unknown, but it’s easy to imagine someone pulling them out of the stockpot once they had worked their magic, then seasoning them. Get the recipe for Poireaux Vinaigrette (Marinated Leeks with Herbs) »

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An All-American Cheese From the Atomic Age

Straight out of sci-fi, this quirky Midwestern wheel is the product of radiation, mutant mold, and one Wisconsin scientist’s imagination.


Ingredients For This Recipe

Flour for dusting

To roll out the pizza dough and to prevent it from sticking to your hands, the rolling pin and the work surface you will need a couple tablespoons of all-purpose flour.

Parchment Paper

You will also need a sheet of parchment paper for this recipe. In a pinch, if you do not have parchment, you can use the instructions for cooking the pizza in an oiled pan (on the bottom rack of the oven) in this recipe for potato pizza.

Pizza dough

We can get pretty great store bought pizza dough near here so I buy my dough. I have also used this crust recipe from King Arthur, and it is pretty good though not as chewy.

Set it out on the counter (wrapped or in plastic so it doesn&rsquot dry out) about an hour before dinner so that it will be relaxed and easier to roll out.

Pesto

I have massive amounts of homemade pesto in my freezer that I use to make pizza and pasta all winter and spring. Store bought works great too.

Cheeses

I used store-bought shredded Italian cheese blend. It is a combination of Provolone, Mozzarella and Cheddar. Some of these blends (also called pizza blend) also include Parmesan. You can use shredded part-skim low moisture mozzarella to save a few extra calories.

If you like, you can also add on shaved Parmesan or Romano once the pizza comes out of the oven.

Raw asparagus

You&rsquoll need a half bunch of asparagus (8 oz.) I like the finer thin spears for this pizza because they cook to the perfect texture in the time that the pizza browns in the oven.

Snap of the pithy ends of the stalks. Cut it into 1-inch lengths, for about 1 1/2 cups of pieces.

For a fun variation, leave them whole and arrange like spokes from the center of the pizza.

Prosciutto

If you are vegetarian, you can omit this. If not, the prosciutto adds a nice element to make this springy pizza even more special. Simply tear it into pieces or chop and peel them apart. I used two slices and that was just the right amount.

If you can&rsquot find it and want an alternative, you can use two strips cooked and crumbled bacon instead.


Changing Your Diet with the Seasons

Adding a layer of complexity, each season of the year is associated with a dosha, which can impact the balance of your own dosha. Kapha season extends from late winter through spring, Pitta season extends from late spring through summer, and Vata season extends from autumn through early winter.

Whatever your dosha is, you can keep your dosha in balance by eating foods that nourish and support your constitution, as mentioned above—and if you need an extra boost during seasonal transitions, consider weaving in foods that pertain to the season as well.

  • Summer: Try to add light, cooling foods to your diet.
  • Fall: A good rule of thumb is to incorporate warming foods, and sweet, bitter, and astringent foods into your diet.
  • Winter: Aim to eat more sweet, sour, and salty foods.
  • Spring: Consume more astringent, bitter, and pungent foods.

Seasonal recipes make for sweet, savory springtime

Published 3:32 pm Wednesday, March 17, 2021

Amy Gunderman has always loved Easter, but she had never cooked a special family meal for the holiday until this past year. The coronavirus kept Gunderman and her daughters from spending the day with their extended family, so she set out to make sure the holiday was still a special occasion with a few favorite dishes.

“As a Christian, Easter is a very special day that offers hope to us all,” Gunderman said. “I also love bunnies and spring. I had bunnies as a child, and my girls have also had pet rabbits. I also love hiding and dyeing eggs with my girls every year.”

Whether hosting Easter brunch or just looking for something new to serve anytime, here are some of Gunderman’s favorite dishes for springtime.

64 oz. no-pulp orange juice

Lemon, lime and orange slices, for garnishing

  1. Combine orange juice and white grape juice into a large container or punch bowl and stir.
  2. Add in 1 liter of 7UP.
  3. Chill.
  4. Garnish glasses with fruit slices.

Grandma Peggy’s Fruit Salad

My Grandma Peggy always made this for our Easter dinners. It was my childhood favorite.

1 package vanilla instant pudding

20 oz can pineapple chunks drain and reserve juice

1 can of diced peaches, drained

2 cups strawberries, sliced

1 cup drained maraschino cherries

2 large green apples, diced

1 cup sliced purple grapes

  1. Whisk instant pudding into pineapple juice. Allow to dissolve and thicken. If you want the mixture to be thinner, add the juice from the peaches.
  2. Combine fruit in a large bowl .
  3. Pour pudding mixture over fruit and gently stir to combine.
  4. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
  5. Notes: This does not do well to make the day before, as the apples and bananas will brown. You may also use blueberries, raspberries or blackberries. You can also use sugar-free pudding or decrease the amount of pudding you use to make this less sweet.

Orange Roll Casserole

2 cans Pillsbury orange rolls

2 tbsp. real butter, melted

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Chop each orange roll into six pieces.
  3. Place all of the orange roll pieces in a 2-quart casserole dish. Set aside the icing container.
  4. In a separate bowl, combine the eggs, cream, butter and vanilla whisk until combined.
  5. Pour the egg mixture over the orange rolls and shake the dish slightly so it settles evenly.
  6. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until the casserole is done all the way through.
  7. Remove from oven and let sit for 10 minutes.
  8. Drizzle the icing that comes with the rolls over the top and serve warm.
  9. Note: You can prepare this the night before. Wrap tightly and refrigerate. Allow 5-10 more minutes of cooking time.

Quick and Easy Quiche

1 cup half-and-half or milk

8 slices bacon, crisply cooked, crumbled (3/4 cup)

1 cup shredded Swiss or cheddar cheese (4 oz.)

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 tbsp. chopped green onion, if desired to add color

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place pie crust in 9-inch glass pie plate as directed on box for one-crust filled pie.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix half-and-half, eggs, salt and pepper and set aside.
  4. Layer bacon, cheeses and onion in crust-lined plate.
  5. Pour egg mixture over top.
  6. Bake 40-50 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean.
  7. Let stand five minutes cut into wedges.

1 cup (8 oz.) finely-shredded cheese

10 oz. package frozen chopped spinach, defrosted and squeezed free of water

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and set a rack in the middle position.
  2. Place pie crust in 9-inch glass pie plate as directed on box for one-crust filled pie . Prick the bottom and sides all over with a fork, pricking about an inch apart.
  3. Bake until fully cooked and lightly golden, 10-15 minutes. Keep an eye on it if it puffs up while cooking, gently prick it with a fork so it will deflate.
  4. Set aside and turn oven down to 325 degrees.
  5. Heat butter in a small skillet over medium-low heat. Cook the onions until soft and translucent, about eight minutes. Do not brown. Set aside to cool.
  6. In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, heavy cream, salt and cayenne pepper.
  7. Place the cooked pie crust on a baking sheet this makes it easy to move in and out of oven.
  8. Spread the onions over the bottom of the cooked crust.
  9. Sprinkle the shredded cheese over the onions.
  10. Scatter the spinach evenly over the cheese, breaking up the clumps as best you can.
  11. Pour the egg and cream mixture over top.
  12. Bake at 325 degrees for 50-55 minutes until the custard is set and top is lightly golden.
  13. Serve hot or warm.
  14. Note: I usually defrost the frozen spinach quickly by placing it in a fine mesh strainer and running hot water over it. I then gather the spinach into a ball and squeeze it dry. The spinach should be completely dry otherwise, your quiche will be watery.

Amy Gunderman is a graduate of Phil Campbell and the University of Montevallo, and she has been in the Franklin County Schools system since 2008. She has three daughters, Leah, Anna Beth and Lara.


Strawberry & Cream Croissant French Toast For Your Weekend Brunch

Those with a creative eye know firsthand that inspiration is all around us. Whether you're energized by the earth tones of nature, a color-filled walk through a local farmer's market, or even by a quick scroll through Instagram, you never know what might spark a new creative project.

In the spirit of inspiring your next masterpiece, we're excited to partner with Bounty to fuel the next generation of artists and designers forward by launching a national design competition. We're calling on graphic designers to apply for a chance to see their work featured on a new Brit + Co and Bounty paper towel collection, set to launch in 2022.

Aside from the incredible exposure of having your illustrations on paper towels that'll be in stores across America next year, you'll also receive $5,000 for your art a scholarship for Selfmade, our 10-week entrepreneurship accelerator to take your design career to the next level (valued at $2,000) and a stand alone feature on Brit + Co spotlighting your artistry as a creator.

The Creatively You Design Competition launches Friday, May 21, 2021 and will be accepting submissions through Monday, June 7, 2021.

APPLY NOW

Who Should Apply: Women-identifying graphic designers and illustrators. (Due to medium limitations, we're not currently accepting design submissions from photographers or painters.)

What We're Looking For: Digital print and pattern designs that reflect your design aesthetic. Think optimistic, hopeful, bright — something you'd want to see inside your home.

How To Enter: Apply here, where you'll be asked to submit 2x original design files you own the rights to for consideration. Acceptable file formats include: .PNG, .JPG, .GIF, .SVG, .PSD, and .TIFF. Max file size 5GB. We'll also ask about your design inspiration and your personal info so we can keep in touch.

Artist Selection Process: Panelists from Brit + Co and P&G Bounty's creative teams will judge the submissions and select 50 finalists on June 11, 2021 who will receive a Selfmade scholarship for our summer 2021 session. Then, up to 8 artists will be selected from the finalists and notified on June 18, 2021. The chosen designers will be announced publicly in 2022 ahead of the product launch.

For any outstanding contest Qs, please see our main competition page. Good luck & happy creating!


Strawberry & Cream Croissant French Toast For Your Weekend Brunch

Those with a creative eye know firsthand that inspiration is all around us. Whether you're energized by the earth tones of nature, a color-filled walk through a local farmer's market, or even by a quick scroll through Instagram, you never know what might spark a new creative project.

In the spirit of inspiring your next masterpiece, we're excited to partner with Bounty to fuel the next generation of artists and designers forward by launching a national design competition. We're calling on graphic designers to apply for a chance to see their work featured on a new Brit + Co and Bounty paper towel collection, set to launch in 2022.

Aside from the incredible exposure of having your illustrations on paper towels that'll be in stores across America next year, you'll also receive $5,000 for your art a scholarship for Selfmade, our 10-week entrepreneurship accelerator to take your design career to the next level (valued at $2,000) and a stand alone feature on Brit + Co spotlighting your artistry as a creator.

The Creatively You Design Competition launches Friday, May 21, 2021 and will be accepting submissions through Monday, June 7, 2021.

APPLY NOW

Who Should Apply: Women-identifying graphic designers and illustrators. (Due to medium limitations, we're not currently accepting design submissions from photographers or painters.)

What We're Looking For: Digital print and pattern designs that reflect your design aesthetic. Think optimistic, hopeful, bright — something you'd want to see inside your home.

How To Enter: Apply here, where you'll be asked to submit 2x original design files you own the rights to for consideration. Acceptable file formats include: .PNG, .JPG, .GIF, .SVG, .PSD, and .TIFF. Max file size 5GB. We'll also ask about your design inspiration and your personal info so we can keep in touch.

Artist Selection Process: Panelists from Brit + Co and P&G Bounty's creative teams will judge the submissions and select 50 finalists on June 11, 2021 who will receive a Selfmade scholarship for our summer 2021 session. Then, up to 8 artists will be selected from the finalists and notified on June 18, 2021. The chosen designers will be announced publicly in 2022 ahead of the product launch.

For any outstanding contest Qs, please see our main competition page. Good luck & happy creating!


At a Loss for Sauce

Frank Morano, the owner of Prince Street Pizza and the man behind the pies, has said that his sauce is made with imported olive oil and tomatoes, garlic, and a few spices, so that seemed like a good place to start. You can see how much garlic is in the spicy tomato sauce when you order a slice, so I started with a full nine cloves, roughly chopped and sautéed in olive oil. To bump up the flavor, I also added some dried oregano (oregano is one of those herbs that still pack great flavor even when dried) and a hefty dose of red pepper flakes, which is how the Spicy Spring gets its bite. We're looking for hot-enough-to-notice here, not hot-enough-to-destroy-you.

Once everything is nice and friendly in the pan, I add a can of tomatoes. For this, you want really good-quality canned whole tomatoes, which have a bright hit of acidity and a natural sweetness. DOP San Marzano tomatoes are consistently a fine choice (they're pricey, but worth it), though, if you have access to Chris Bianco's Bianco diNapoli tomatoes, those are good, too. In any case, look for a brand packed without calcium chloride, an additive that is sometimes used to help tomatoes keep their firm shape.

I prefer whole peeled tomatoes to diced or crushed, as it gives you more control over the finished texture. You can chop the tomatoes in a variety of ways. I used to either squeeze them through my fingers in a bowl, or mash them with a potato masher in the pot, but recently I've discovered an even better tool for the job: a stiff-bladed pastry blender. Its firm blades let you efficiently chop up the tomatoes to whatever consistency you'd like, directly in the pan.


Get Seasonal: Spring Recipes You’ll Love

To celebrate the season, we’re getting creative with the three As of spring: asparagus, artichokes, and arugula. Each of these tasty seasonal veggies has something different to offer in the kitchen, and we can’t wait to explore every one of them. Read on for fresh ideas we hope you’ll love.

Asparagus Risotto Verde

Photo: Karen Tedesco/Family Style Food

Other spring vegetables like carrots and fennel make a cameo in this inventive recipe, but asparagus is decidedly the star of the show. With its bright green color and fresh-from-the-farm flavor, this creative risotto adaptation is sure to be a hit at your next dinner party.

“I imagined eating a bowl of something that looked and tasted of springtime,” Family Style Food blogger Karen Tedesco said of the inspiration behind her recipe. We say, “Mission accomplished!”

Get step-by-step instructions and tips on how to make asparagus risotto verde at Family Style Food.

Asparagus Toast With Poached Eggs

Photo: Sylvia Fountaine/Feasting at Home

Warm vinaigrette, farm-fresh eggs, and seasonal asparagus come together in this delightfully simple preparation that’s perfect for brunch.

Modeled after a memorable meal that chef, caterer, and Feasting at Home blogger Sylvia Fountaine enjoyed in Paris, this lovely recipe manages the formidable feat of being decadent and unpretentious at the same time.

Learn how to make asparagus toast with poached eggs with step-by-step instructions from Feasting at Home.

Triple-Pea and Asparagus Salad With Feta-Mint Dressing

Photo: Caitlin Bensel/Food & Wine

The fresh flavors of asparagus, peas, and mint combine with the nutty flavor of farro in this hearty spring salad from Food & Wine. We hope you can find the first peas of the season for the “triple-pea” part of the recipe (green, sugar snap, and snow peas), but you can substitute frozen if you need to.

The salty and lemony feta-mint dressing just may become your summer stalwart it’s also perfect with grilled vegetables, crispy roasted potatoes, or even folded through warm pasta.

Get the step-by-step instructions for making triple-pea and asparagus salad with feta-mint dressing at Food & Wine. Enjoy!

Vegan Veal Parmesan Sandwich With Baby Arugula

Photo: Veronica Sheppard/The Vegetarian Ginger

Peppery arugula adds some bite to these creative meat-free Parmesan subs from Veronica Sheppard of The Vegetarian Ginger.

Not only is this pick fresh and seasonal, it’s also a great way to enjoy a hot sandwich without busting your warm-weather diet.

With tips and step-by-step instructions from The Vegetarian Ginger, you can make your own vegan veal Parmesan sandwich.

Creamy Avocado Linguine With Meyer Lemon & Arugula

Photo: Sylvia Fountaine/Feasting at Home

This clever vegan twist on pesto pasta features creamy avocados, fresh seasonal arugula, garlic, and Meyer lemon zest. “The creaminess of the avocado fools you into believing you are consuming something rich and decadent and cheesy,” says chef and blogger Sylvia Fountaine from Feasting at Home.

This dish looks may look like something from a fancy fusion restaurant, but it’s surprisingly simple to put together, making it ideal for busy weeknights or thrown-together weekend gatherings.

Get step-by-step instructions and tips on how to make creamy avocado linguine with Meyer lemon and arugula at Feasting at Home.

Roasted Vegetable Pizza With Baby Arugula

Photo: Seasons and Suppers

The savory flavor of artichokes, cherry tomatoes, and roasted red onions makes this pizza from Seasons and Suppers awesome — but a drizzle of balsamic vinegar and a sprinkle of fresh arugula takes it over the top.

You can make this “Veg Out” pizza entirely from scratch — or use your favorite store-bought dough for quick and easy preparation.

Get step-by-step instructions to make this scrumptious roasted vegetable pizza with arugula at Seasons and Suppers.

Spinach & Artichoke Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Photo: Heidi Larsen/Foodie Crush

If you ask us, the idea of combining a toasty grilled cheese with the creamy goodness of spinach and artichoke dip is downright genius.

Dreamed up by Foodie Crush blogger and self-proclaimed grilled cheese connoisseur Heidi Larsen, this creation combines seasonal freshness with classic comfort food for a bite that’s tough to beat.

Follow the step-by-step instructions at Foodie Crush and make your own spinach and artichoke grilled cheese sandwich.

Beer-Steamed Stuffed Artichokes

Photo: Jackie Dodd/The Beeroness

In our experience, any recipe containing the words “beer-steamed” has a 99% chance of rocking your socks off. And if you’re a bacon-lover, this boozy adaptation of the classic stuffed artichoke just may be your new favorite dish.

Dreamed up by Jackie Dodd (aka The Beeroness), this definitely-not-vegetarian recipe features a light and citrusy wheat beer that’s perfect for spring. Dodd will even show you a frustration-free method for peeling and stuffing those unruly artichokes.

Grab a cold one and make some beer-steamed stuffed artichokes with step-by-step instructions from The Beeroness.

Editor’s note: Originally published on May 8, 2013, this article was updated in April 2021.

By Mary Mazzoni

Mary is a lifelong vegetarian and enjoys outdoor activities like hiking, biking and relaxing in the park. When she’s not outside, she’s probably watching baseball. She is a former assistant editor for Earth911.


STEAMED LETTUCE WRAPPED HALIBUT

2 pounds skinless halibut fillet

Salt and freshly ground white pepper

1-2 large head Bibb lettuce

¼ cup very coarsely chopped fresh dill

6 (4-inch) sprigs fresh mint

8 tablespoons unsalted butter

3 shallots, finely chopped (about 5 tablespoons)

2 teaspoon grated lemon zest

¼ cup freshly squeezed lemon juice

¼ cup coarsely chopped fresh dill

Freshly ground white pepper

Dill flowers or small dill sprigs

Cut the fillet into equal 2 inch square pieces. Season both sides of the fish with salt and pepper. Separate the outer leaves from the head of lettuce, without tearing them. Place a leaf cupped side up and center a piece of fish in the middle of the leaf (use two leaves if necessary). Sprinkle the fish with 1 tablespoon of the dill. Top with another 1 or 2 lettuce leaves, this time cupped side down, so that the fish is completely enclosed in lettuce. Wrap the remaining fillets in lettuce, sprinkle each one with dill, lemon slice and arrange them, without crowding, in a steamer rack or basket.

Bring several inches of water to a boil in the bottom of a steamer. Drop in the mint sprigs, put the steamer rack or basket in place, cover and steam fish 8 minutes for each inch of thickness (e.g. if fish is 3/4 inch thick, steam 6 minutes).

Turn off the heat, uncover the steamer and let the fish rest for 1 to 2 minutes. To check for doneness, carefully lift the top leave from one of the packets and peek inside the fillet. If it is still translucent in the center, cover and steam for another 1 to 2 minutes.

While the fish is steaming, make the sauce. Melt 3 tablespoon of the butter in a small saucepan or skillet over medium-low heat. Add the shallots and cook, stirring, until it is softened but not browned, about 1 minute. Add the lemon zest and juice and bring the mixture to a simmer. Now, vigorously whisk in the remaining butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, allowing each addition to melt before adding the next. The sauce should be slightly thickened and the butter emulsified. Stir in the dill and season with the salt and pepper to taste. Carefully transfer the fish packets to warm serving plates. Pour the sauce over and around the fish and garnish with the dill flowers.


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