It’s the season for brighter, fresher flavors. The tangy sweetness of strawberries, the tender grassiness of just picked asparagus, the refreshing sharpness of sorrel and the spice of young garlic and onions are just what we’re longing for after the darker, heartier foods of winter.
It’s an age-old craving, this desire to indulge in the tonic vegetables and fruits of spring.
Margie Thorpe, founder of Vegetable Husband, finds the arrival of spring has some of her customers thinking of tomatoes and other summer crops. She has to explain that tomatoes are going to be hitting their stride in late July. Instead, she tempts them with strawberries, our first local fruit of the year.
This summer will mark the fifth anniversary of Vegetable Husband, an online service that allows customers to order baskets of organically grown produce. Customers can start and stop their deliveries at anytime.
It’s time to celebrate the arrival of our prettiest season and treat yourself to a bite of spring.
CLASSIC SORREL SOUP
Hands on: 30 minutes Total time: 30 minutes Makes: 6 cups
This delicious soup is adapted from one provided by chef Ian Forrest of FLIP Burger Boutique. There’s a reason this recipe is a classic. “I especially love sorrel because (it’s) super easy to grow at home. This soup is one of the easiest, and most delicious, ways I have found to incorporate this local and seasonal ingredient,” said Forrest. Homemade chicken stock will make for the thicker, most luxurious soup.
To prepare the sorrel, rinse the leaves and remove any tough stems. Thorpe likes this soup with the addition of roasted potatoes. She cuts young fingerling potatoes into small chunks, rubs them with olive oil and then roasts in a 400 degree oven until golden brown and tender, about 20 minutes.
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
½ cup chopped leeks, green onions or ramps
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
4 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade
5 cups chopped sorrel (about 3 small bunches, 6 ounces)
Salt to taste
½ cup cream
2 egg yolks
Sorrel Pesto, for garnish (see recipe, below)
Roasted potatoes, if desired (see note, above)