This month I had some fun in the kitchen with my friend, fellow food blogger and dietitian, Marilyne Petitclerc, author of the French cooking blog, menoum.co. Together we created a springtime dinner menu featuring local, seasonal ingredients. We had a blast preparing this simple and nourishing meal, and I think our dinner guests can attest that it was a success! Although spring was slow to arrive in Toronto this year, the tulips are out, and so are some of our favourite local springtime vegetables: asparagus and fiddleheads. What the heck are fiddleheads? Yes, my thoughts exactly when I first encountered them. Fiddleheads are actually a type of fern that grows along river banks in Canada during the spring, and you can even harvest them yourself! We ‘foraged’ our fiddleheads at the St. Lawrence market in Toronto. Serve fiddleheads at your next springtime dinner gathering to intrigue and impress your guests.
The Springtime Dinner Menu and Recipes:
- Kale salad with blueberries and feta
- Roasted asparagus and fiddleheads
- Pasta with roasted golden beet pesto (see recipe below)
- Fresh rhubarb sauce over vanilla ice cream
Roasted Golden Beet Pesto
- Serves 6
- Prep Time: 25
- Cooking Time: 1.5 hours
- 4 medium golden beets, roasted (you can also use red beets for a more vibrant colour)
- 2 large cloves garlic, minced
- ½ cup walnuts
- ½ cup olive oil
- ½ cup parmesan, grated
- ¼ cup fresh basil, chopped
- Pinch of sea salt, to taste
- Squeeze of lemon juice, to taste
- 1 package spaghetti
- Preheat the oven to 400 F. Wrap the beets whole in foil and roast them in the oven for 1 hour, or until you can easily pierce them with a knife.
- Let the beets cool, then remove the skin. You should be able to peel the skins off with your fingers.
- While beets are cooling, start cooking your pasta.
- Quarter, then slice the roasted beets. Set aside half of the beets to garnish your pasta.
- Put half of the beets, and the rest of the pesto ingredients in a food processor, except for the basil. Blend until smooth.
- When your pasta is cooked and drained, mix the beet pesto and pasta together in the pot you cooked the pasta in.
- Garnish pasta with the remaining sliced beets and chopped fresh basil. Serve with roasted asparagus and fiddleheads and kale salad. Bon App!
Don’t forget to save room for dessert! We concluded our meal with the perfect springtime dessert: local, fresh rhubarb sauce and ice cream.