One of my favorite parts of a new season, is welcoming seasonal produce that hasn't been around in some time. And while some produce is available nearly year-round, you'll find that it never tastes quite as amazing (or is as cheap!) as when it is in season.
Eating seasonally and locally is something that is super important to me (post coming next week on that!), as there are nothing but benefits on all fronts of doing so. It's cheaper because it's easier for your local farmers to produce during optimal conditions for that produce, it's tastier because it's optimal weather conditions to create fresh flavor, AND it's more nutrient-dense during peak season than any other time.
Spring time brings out all my favorite gorgeous florals, but when it comes to produce, three favorites that jump to mind that appear during spring that are most special to me. Even without the palette of a Top Chef judge, you can tell how much more flavorful these three become when in their prime.
Today, I'm highlighting these 3 spring produce picks, reasons why they're awesome to eat, and 3 of my favorite recipes using them.
I adore rhubarb. It's the sassy, more tart, deeper counterpart to the sweet strawberry, which it's commonly paired with. Aside from it's gorgeous color and just being pretty, it's easy to use, thanks to it's ability to quickly break down in a smoothie, pie, or jam. Don't eat the leaves because they are actually kind of poisonous-- but don't worry, that's why they're not sold with them in grocery stores!
A good source of fiber (digestion), vitamin K like kale and spinach (neural/brain function), and vitamin C (immunity).
Asparagus is a powerhouse of a vegetable, that is adored by the fitness community for it's high protein content and fiber. In the springtime, asparagus becomes wonderfully crisp and even a bit sweet. It's perfect for an easy roast, or to mix into a veggie medley for a satiating dinner.
A cup of cooked asparagus contains 5g of protein and 3g of carbs, which is super rare for a veggie. It's high in fiber (digestion), folate (cognitive health), and high in the amino acid, asparagine, a natural diuretic-- it is helpful for those with high blood pressure and heart disease.
Hello, adorable crisp spring peas! I haaaaated you while growing up because I was only exposed to gross frozen and canned mushy peas, but now I can't get enough of your crisp and beautifully refreshing flavors during springtime. It's a sweet little bonus in pestos, pastas, and veggie-centric dishes.
Also high in protein, with 8g per cup but also higher in sugars with 9g per cup. High in vitamin K like kale and spinach (neural/brain function), folate (cognitive health), and vitamin C (immunity). Also high in manganese (healthy bones!).
Spring Ramp & Pea Pesto
Purple Cabbage + Snap Pea Salad w/Sesame Shallot Vinaigrette (okay, this is snap peas, but in the fam!)