Tuesday, April 9, 2013

A Taste of Spring

I love the idea of eating with the seasons, and Spring marks the beginning of the best food time of year. The more the weather warms up, the more local produce starts to pop up. Living in Chicago in early April, typical Spring produce is still being shipped in from the warmer states, but it still offers me hope of the warmer weather that's just ahead. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, and know sunnier days and fresh local produce is just around the corner!

This was a super simple dinner I threw together one night last week, and it was seriously Spring in a bowl. It was light and fresh tasting; full of green vegetables and bright flavors. The farro and vegetables paired well with salmon, and it would also make a great side dish with shrimp, chicken, or another protein.

Key flavors: lemon zest, dill, and poached salmon.

Sauteed asparagus tossed with chopped fresh baby spinach.

The combination of lemon zest and dill is what makes this dish.
Pairing with asparagus and salmon is a perfect taste of Spring!

I really hate writing out recipes, since I tend to improve while I'm cooking. Sometimes I use a recipe to guide my cooking, but other times I just get an idea and run with it. This was one such meal-- I knew I wanted salmon and asparagus, and I went from there. I'll give you a quick rundown, though, in case you want to attempt to recreate...

  • Cook farro according to package directions. I bought quick cook farro from Trader Joe's, and it ended up way too mushy. Just plan a little more time, and cook your farro from scratch. 
  • Chop asparagus into 2 inch pieces (and get rid of the last couple inches at the bottom-- it's woody/stringy/gross). Saute in a little olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. 
  • Rough chop baby spinach, place in a bowl, and add the cooked (and still warm) asparagus on top. Add the cooked farro, and stir. The warm asparagus and farro will help wilt the spinach. Add dill and lemon zest, and stir. Taste the mix, and add salt, pepper, lemon juice, or white wine vinegar to taste. 
  • Portion out the farro salad into bowls, and top with poached salmon that was seasoned with salt and pepper.  I left it at that point, but also think a dollop of creme fraiche on top would be fantastic!
  • Drink with some crisp white wine, and think warm weather thoughts!

No comments:

Post a Comment