This recipe is like spring in a bowl. It is fiddlehead season, for this week at least, and this dish highlights these tasty late spring veggies. I love those times of year when we can enjoy food that has a only a narrow window of opportunity like fiddlehead. I may only have one or two meals of fiddlehead each year, in late-May to early June when we get some in our local organic produce bin, so I love to come up with dishes that will showcase them.
In the past I have savoured these morsels in risotto and pasta, but wanted to liven things up a little this year and toss them in a lighter sauce and zucchini noodles.
Note: This recipe could be easily adapted to replace asparagus or snow peas when fiddleheads are out of season (hopefully not by the time this post is up).
What is a fiddlehead?
Fiddleheads are ferns before they blossom out into the full fern leaf. They taste similar to asparagus, but are a bit more delicate, almost grassier.
- You want to eat them when they are bright green, and not discoloured.
- To prepare them, soak them in cold water for at least 15 minutes, then pare off the ends, which are most often brown.
- They should br eaten as fresh as possible and always cooked, not raw.
- 2tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1cup onionsliced thinly
- 2 cups red peppersliced thinly
- 2 zucchinispiralized or shaved into 'noodles'
- 2cups shiitake mushroomsliced
- 2 cups fiddleheadscleaned and trimmed
- 2cloves garlicminced
- 1teaspoon dried thyme(or even better 2 teaspoons fresh thyme)
- 1/2 cup white wine or vegetable stock
- salt & pepperto taste