No Recipe Required

Spring’s first edible gems are so delicious that recipes are not required. Learn more at TwiceasTasty.com.
May began with a week of firsts for Twice as Tasty. I had my first experience baking in a real woodfired pizza oven during a Grilled Sourdough Pizza workshop, and I taught my first Fine Dining: Front Country workshop for Outsiety. In both classes, I was able to share first cuttings freshly snipped from the garden. This week, I also baked the first stalks of rhubarb into a dessert to share with friends.

My first cuttings are almost always from perennials pushing up through the ground year after year. You probably think little of these plants when you see them in a produce section: they’re not showy, or colorful, or supersized. But when they’re the first edibles to pop through your garden soil, on their own time and with no effort on your part, they’re gems. And my favorite ways to eat them are so simple that you don’t even need a recipe.
Read more about simple spring meals

Advertisements

Learning to Eat Well

Want to get a jump-start on the summer season? Take a Twice as Tasty workshop. Learn more at TwiceasTasty.com.
It’s time: Uncover beds, clean up the garden, thin the berry patches, pull the season’s first weeds, and plant seeds and starts. Gardening season has begun.

Although your mind might be reeling with the to-do lists that will get your garden up and running, give a little thought to where its bounty is going: table, fridge, freezer, pantry, and more. I’ve already loaded the blog with lots of information to help you enjoy what you’ve grown—now and later. But you’ll get an even bigger jump-start on the season with a Twice as Tasty Live workshop. You’ll learn more, faster, among friends, and with my personal help. This week’s post highlights some of the best workshops to get on your calendar this summer. As days grow longer, my schedule gets tighter, so pick your topics and contact me soon to set up your personalized workshop for the summer season.
Read more about learning to eat well

Potatoes

Potato salads are a summer staple, whether I’m making them from jawbreaker-size potatoes stolen from row edges while checking the potato plants’ progress or full-grown spuds cut down to size. They go beautifully with summer’s green beans, cherry tomatoes, and sugar snaps. But we grow so many storage potatoes that it seems a shame to give up the salads just because the other fresh produce is long gone. This version uses stored veggies, making it a late-season or even midwinter go-to. The salad itself is quite basic, and a few unconventional techniques make it a snap. Inspired by traditional salads I ate regularly as I traveled in Russia and France—salad Olivier and salade niçoise, respectively—I’ve created two dressings that bring distinctly different flavors to the forefront; I sometimes alternate between the two salad dressings for several weeknight meals.
Learn to make Potato Salad with Russian and French Dressings

Basil

I love basil. Its flavor really only pops when it’s just off the plant—and boy, does it pop. Sweet, Italian, lemon, lime, Thai, purple—there are so many options, all with a slightly different taste. Unfortunately, once the garden winds down, that fresh taste is difficult to find, particularly if your house, like mine, lacks a sunny windowsill. Dried basil is a kitchen staple off-season, but it lacks the full summer flavor.

That’s where pesto comes in. Its texture and flavor don’t match the basil leaf you pinch off the stem and slip into your mouth while you harvest, but it will remind you of that leaf when you drop a cube into a dish midwinter. I prefer to save my basil as a pesto base—minus the pine nuts and Parmesan—so that it’s versatile. The same technique lets you make pesto with other ingredients, such as pea shoots and garlic scapes. Learn to make Basil Pesto Base and Spring Pesto with Pea Shoots