Simple Springtime Recipes for a Seasonal Family Meal

Hooray, spring has sprung! As much as I love my chilies, stews, and soups (and you know I do!), I’m definitely ready for some lighter fare. Well, okay– some lighter fare, because a girl just has to have a little sweetness in her life!

Here are the fruits and vegetables hanging around on the produce aisle or your local farmer’s market this month, and some great ways to use them:

Fruits: apricots, bananas, honeydew melon, mangos, pineapple, strawberries

Vegetables: asparagus, broccoli, cabbage, green beans, leeks, lettuce, mushrooms, onions, peas, rhubarb, spinach

Fennel Citrus Salad with Pine Nuts

Prep: 10 min.
Yields: 4 servings

1 ruby red grapefruit or pomelo
3 clementines or blood oranges segmented
½ cup fennel, shaved
1 bag fresh spring salad mix

4-5 large kalamata olives
½ small shallot, minced
1 lemon, juiced
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and ground pepper to taste
¼ cup pine nuts, toasted

  1. Dressing: Put all of the ingredients into a small jar with a tight-fitting lid. Shake well and chill.
  2. Salad: Arrange greens on a large serving platter and layer on citrus segments and fennel. Drizzle with a few tablespoons of the vinaigrette, and sprinkle with pine nuts.

Creamy Spring Pea and Mushroom Risotto

Prep: 20 min.
Cook: 30 min.
Yields: 6 servings

1 ½ cups Arborio rice
1 large leek, washed and diced
1 ½ pound mushrooms, sliced
2 cups spring peas
6 cups organic, low sodium chicken broth
½ cup white wine
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons olive oil
¼ cup parmesan, grated
Freshly ground pepper

  1. In a large saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil. Cool leeks over low heat until translucent. Add mushrooms and sweat the vegetables; set aside.
  2. In a skillet, add 1 tablespoon olive oil and cook rice, stirring until pale, about 2-3 minutes. Add wine, stirring until fully absorbed. Add broth a cup at a time until fully absorbed, adding the peas with the last cup of broth.
  3. Remove from heat, stir in mushroom-leek mixture, butter, and parmesan. Salt and pepper to taste.

Grilled Rum-Spiked Apricots

Prep: 15 min.
Yields: 4 servings

6 apricots, halved
(Note: You can also use the same recipe with pineapple wedges, also in season)
¼ cup packed light brown sugar
½ lemon, juiced
1 tablespoon rum (optional)
½ teaspoon rum extract if not using dark rum
Vanilla ice cream, for serving

  1. Preheat grill to 500°F. Place apricots in a large bowl. Add sugar and toss to coat. Place on the grill, cut side down, for 3-4 minutes.
  2. Whisk lemon, rum, and a sprinkling of sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat until reduced.
  3. Transfer apricots onto plates, drizzle with sauce, and serve with ice cream, if desired.

What are your favorite springtime dishes to serve in the month of April? Share your recipes with us!

Tags : recipes   seasonal recipes   spring recipes   

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