Tuesday, April 13, 2010

An Edible Feast Featuring: Fiddle Heads (#11), Garlic Mustard (#12), Day LIly (#7), and Canada Mayflower (#13)

We are having trouble keeping up with the early spring offerings. Everything is ahead of schedule.

This Sunday, we trekked down to the flood grounds by the Connecticut and found fiddleheads which last year didn't poke their heads up for another two weeks! Fiddleheads are the first opening of a fern and some people compare them to asparagus. They are one of the few wild edibles (other than berries) that are highly sought after. We feel strongly about collecting them carefully and have tried to scout out places where others are not collecting. If you collect all the fiddle heads on a given plant, no leaves will sprout on the fern, and it will die--no fiddle heads next year. We try to take no more than two heads per plant. We collect them when they are between 3 and 6 inches tall.

I made a fantastic Asian themed dinner centered around this choicest of spring delights: a beef (grass fed, free range, heritage breed, raised by a friend), fiddle head, and garlic mustard stir fry with a day lily, Canada mayflower, orange salad. We loved this meal, though we would not use the garlic mustard in it again, it was much too bitter for us.

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