A Taste of Spring!
Oh how glorious it is when Spring has finally sprung! Sunshine, birds singing, flowers blooming, greenery everywhere…and so many delights for the taste buds! Our new for Spring olive oil and balsamic vinegar flavors are bursting with freshness and flavor and complement the season’s fresh offerings.
One of the first Spring delights is the vibrant and crunchy Asparagus. Raw asparagus marinated overnight in our Sicilian Lemon Balsamic Vinegar delivers a vibrant crunch, delicious on its own or topping a spring salad. Rick’s recipe for an Asparagus Frittata with Porcini Mushroom Olive Oil makes for an earthy meal. When choosing asparagus, thickness is only a sign of maturity. Instead, look for the tips to be closed and compact and the color to be bright green or violet tinged. When trimming, find where the color lightens and where it easily bends to trim of the woody ends.
Another gorgeous green, which also happens to be labeled as a top food trend of 2015, is Spring peas. Spring peas are crunchy and delicately flavored…a very long way off from the frozen peas your mother made you eat growing up. They come in different varieties; the English which need to be shucked and the Sugar Snap that can be eaten pods and all. Regardless of your preferred variety, they pair nicely with a variety of our olive oils and vinegars. Sprinkle with a sweet wine vinegar, such as Italian Lambrusco or Plum Agretti, and top a vegetable or grain salad. Or try a fresh Spring Pea mash made with fresh mint and either Sorrento Lemon, Persian Lime, or Californian Arbequina Olive Oils. Serve the mash as a refreshing side dish to fish or spread on toast wedges. Peas contain the highest amount of plant protein…so eat them while you can!
Another sign that Spring has arrived is when those beautiful deep pink stalks of rhubarb begin to take their place at the markets. Rhubarb is indeed a vegetable that has long been used as a fruit in desserts and drinks and such. It freezes very well when cleaned and chopped or can also be preserved as a Shrub, or drinking vinegar, as explained in this recipe for a Lambrusco Shrub. The ever popular Strawberry Rhubarb pie is even more delicious with the sweet & tart addition of a few tablespoons of Strawberry Balsamic Vinegar or the tangy Strawberry White Balsamic Vinegar.
The coming of Spring also means that Spring Lambs have arrived at market…just in time for Easter! Our recipe for Marinated Grilled Lamb Chops utilizes our Lemon Garlic Olive Oil and Premium White Balsamic to bring complexity to this flavorful meat. If you are roasting a leg of lamb for Easter, generously coat it with Rosemary Agrumato Olive Oil before putting it in the oven for an incredibly juicy and fragrant Easter meal.
If you are feeling adventurous this Spring, foraging is a wonderful way to enjoy Spring’s bounty. Ramps, or wild leeks, are easy to identify by their wide leafy green and pungent small white bulb…found either growing on south-facing slopes or offered at your local farmers market! Their strong garlicky flavor makes a pungent pesto whipped up with our Sevillano Extra Virgin Olive Oil, walnuts, and pecorino cheese. This pesto is a perfect topping for pasta and meats.
Isn't Spring delicious?!