On sweet spring bounty

img_0999We liked it so much I made it again

Ah, the beauty of the spring garden!

Of course as I type this MY spring gardens have barely budged past the crocuses:  my forsythia stubbornly remains closed, the daffodils up but not blooming.  So what could I possibly be talking about then?  Ah.  The gleanings of the greenhouse of course.

I made a pizza recently as a side dish to whatever bigger better thing I was serving.  I cannot remember what that bigger dish was but it was probably some meat.  But the pizza:  we keep talking about it!  Why?  It was covered with spring onions.  Spring onions, parsley and thyme; chopped chives.  Olive oil, sea salt, pepper.  That is it.  No cheese, no tomatoes.  Wrinkling her nose, our daughter, who is onion-phobic thanks to being served some commercial pizza, said she absolutely would not eat a green pizza.  “But it’s not bitter,” we told her.  “It’s actually sweet, kiddo:  just trust us and try it.”  She did, and she loved it.

Many things out of the ground right now are heartbreakingly sweet.  Parsnips, carrots, leeks, multiplier onions, spring (overwintered seed) onions or onion sets; lettuces, turnip greens, arugula.  Without the goosing that the heat of a hot spring day gives them, these goodies, biennials all, are sweet tasting.  Once the heat hits them, they react with a “touche-pas” bitterness that keeps everyone from eating them:  their goal now is seed production, so it does them no good at all to be attractively delicious.

Eating-wise, this is becoming my favorite season.

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6 responses to “On sweet spring bounty

  1. Even when it’s only the beginning of april, we already notice a decline in our expenses on vegetables. We don’t have to buy veggies from May till October, but I have succeeded in ‘cooking from the garden’ already several days in a row now…

  2. That was quite brave of your child to try something she was certain to hate. I was not a good cook when my kids were tiny, so they were justified in their caution. For some reason, when their dad left the last time I took up cooking as therapy. They were already away in college and cooking on their own by the time I hit my cooking stride.
    My kids all cook well; I guess it was a survival thing.

  3. Eating-wise, it really is a great time of year. Not only is everything very flavorful but the limited availabilty makes each and every green leaf, onion, or leek all that much more appreciated. I spent over an hour picking enough fixings for a salad last night, the poor garden has been picked to death. Thank goodness for spinich, turnip greens and alliums.

    A sweet green pizza, now that sounds good.

    Mike

  4. Looks delicious! I’m still hovering around my beds waiting for early greens from thinning the beets, baby lettuce leaves and radishes. Soon…soon.

  5. Your pizza looks delicious, and I’m glad your daughter thought so too 🙂 The tiny greens that are out now are so tender and sweet, and the ones with “bite” have just a tang to them. I’d never think of putting them on a pizza, but I think that this is Friday night’s dinner at my house. Like ChristyACB, I’m still waiting for the first thinnings, but some of those great greens are at the farmers’ market and just seeing them inspires me for the start of the growing season in full force.

  6. Annetanne, that’s great! This might be a clue that you can start adjusting your eating calendar to add April and maybe November: believe me, it’s fun not buying veggies and eating really super fresh ones.

    Pamela, you crack me up!! I will say our kid is a fairly adventurous eater. Her favorite thing is sushi, and obviously we are SO close to a Japanese restaurant out here in the boonies. I do think kids cue in to what their parents think is important and so far we haven’t poisoned her so we’re to be trusted!

    Mike, you’re describing why I ended up with a 2nd greenhouse: the first one’s winter salads were so picked-over they were positively bonsai! Poor plants. But there is something quite precious about scarcity. I probably don’t revere our greens as much as I should because there are so many of them now, and I am a bit ashamed by that.

    Christy, in a month, you’ll be humming a very different tune, aren’t you excited??

    MC, yes, I have made salad pizzas too: cook the cheese and onions etc. on the pizza first and then place a layer of slightly-dressed spicy salad greens (arugula, mustard, some spinach) on top and cook only until wilted. YUM. But yeah this simple onion-green one was just as delectable. We do have the green onion things coming out our ears though now: last night I made them with mashed potatoes, super yum!

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