Spring Greens

Posted: March 2, 2021 at 11:34 am

Recipes by Gertrude Treadaway

Sugar Snap Peas With Ricotta Salata and Mint

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 8-ounce packages trimmed sugar snap peas
2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
1½ teaspoons grated lemon rind
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
1½ ounces ricotta salata, crumbled
(about 1/3 cup)

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan and swirl. Add peas. Sauté 3 minutes
or until crisp-tender. Stir in mint, lemon rind, pepper and salt. Sprinkle with cheese.

Spring Pea and Radish Salad

½ pound fresh wax or
green beans
½ pound fresh sugar snap
2 cups water
6 large radishes, thinly
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon dried tarragon
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon coarsely ground pepper

Snip ends off beans and peas. Remove strings from peas.
In a large saucepan, bring water to a boil over high heat.
Add beans and reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 4 to 5 minutes.
Add peas. Cover and simmer until beans and peas are crisp-tender, another 2 to 3 minutes. Drain. Toss beans and peas with radishes. Stir together honey, tarragon, salt and pepper. Drizzle over vegetables.

Sautéed Spring Greens With Bacon and Mustard Seeds

2 ounces thick-cut bacon, finely diced
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 large shallot, thinly sliced
1 hot red chile, seeded and finely chopped
1 tablespoon yellow mustard seeds
1¼ pounds mixed young spring greens—such as dandelion, mustard, collards, Tuscan kale and spinach—stems and inner ribs trimmed, leaves cut into ribbons
Freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar

In a large skillet, cook the bacon in the olive oil over moderate heat, stirring until golden, about 3 minutes. Add the shallot, chile and mustard seeds. Cook until softened, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the greens, and season with salt and pepper. Cook, tossing frequently, until wilted and tender, about 5 to 6 minutes. Stir in the vinegar and serve.

Strawberry Spinach Salad

4 ounces goat or feta cheese, crumbled
1 cup pecans, lightly toasted
¼ cup red onion, thinly sliced
11 ounces baby spinach, prewashed
1 pound strawberries, hulled and quartered
Salad dressing

Combine all ingredients. Dress with balsamic or poppy seed dressing.

Spring Greens Pasta

16 ounces spaghetti
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
4 garlic cloves, minced
¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper
12 ounces marinated artichokes
1½ cups asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
½ cup white wine
2 cups vegetable broth
1 cup frozen peas
1 tablespoon lemon zest (approximately 1 lemon)
4 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (approximately 1 lemon)
1 cup Parmesan cheese, divided
4 cups fresh baby spinach
Fresh parsley

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. You will use the same pot of water to blanch asparagus and cook pasta. Add asparagus to the boiling water. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes until color brightens. Reduce heat. Using a slotted spoon, remove asparagus from boiling water and place in a strainer. Do not drain water. Run cold water over strainer with asparagus to stop cooking. Set asparagus aside.

After asparagus is blanched and just before you add the pasta, start sauce. In a large, deep sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat. Add garlic and sauté for a minute or two or until just fragrant. Add white wine and let simmer for 1 minute. Add vegetable broth. Stir to combine and let vegetable/wine mixture simmer for 7 to 10 minutes.

While sauce simmers, add pasta to boiling water. Cook until al dente, generally on the low end of the recommended cooking time on the pasta package. Reserve ½ cup of the pasta water before draining into colander. Once wine and veggie broth is done simmering, add artichokes, asparagus and peas. Cook over medium heat for 1 to 2 minutes to warm.

Add cooked pasta, ½ cup to ¾ cup Parmesan, lemon juice, lemon zest (reserve some for garnish) and toss together. Add some of the reserved water as needed. Stir to combine. Simmer a minute or two so spaghetti absorbs some of the broth. Add spinach. Stir to combine. The dish is ready as soon as the spinach wilts. Top with Parmesan and lemon zest to taste.