Spring is the perfect time to dig into a healthier diet featuring the season’s delicious and nutritious bounty of fresh fruits and vegetables. In addition to filling up on nutrient-packed produce, eating fruits and vegetables at their peak in spring is also an eco-friendly move that supports your local farmers and community. Here are the spring fruits and vegetables to pile on your plate this season.
Spring Fruit Salad
If you ever have the occasion to try a cherimoya from California, it could easily woo you to live there (or at least stock up on as many cherimoyas as you can to take home). The pudding-fleshed fruit is a luscious treat to savor by itself and easily transforms ordinary dishes into something special.
- 2 cherimoyas, halved, seeds removed, peeled, diced
- 1 pint strawberries, trimmed, halved
- 2 kiwis, peeled, sliced crosswise
- 2 apricots, halved, pitted, sliced
- Juice of 1 lime
- 1 tablespoon agave
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh mint
- In a large bowl, toss together cherimoya, strawberries, kiwi, and apricots.
- In a small bowl, whisk together lime juice, agave, and mint. Drizzle over fruit and toss.
- Serve chilled.
Fava Bean Dip
Snatch up fava beans as soon as they hit the farmers’ market stand because they won’t be around for long. This fava bean dip can be spread on crostini, tossed with hot pasta for a sauce, or served as a dip for chips, crackers, or crudités.
Makes about 2 cups
- 2 1/2 pounds fresh fava beans, shelled (about 2 cups)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 cup chopped shallots
- 2 cloves garlic
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
- 1/4 cup water
- 4-ounces goat cheese, softened at room temperature
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
- Sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Cook fava beans in a pot of salted, boiling water for 2 to 3 minutes; drain and transfer beans to a bowl of ice water to halt cooking.
- Drain beans again and remove the outer skin and set aside.
- Heat oil in a small skillet over medium heat; cook shallots and garlic, stirring often, for 2 minutes; remove from heat and stir in lemon juice and zest.
- Transfer beans to a food processor; add shallot mixture and water; pulse until smooth. If mixture is chunky, turn processor on low and drizzle in olive oil, a little at a time, until smooth but thick.
- Add goat cheese and parsley and purée; season with salt and pepper. Serve at room temperature, or refrigerate up to 3 days, letting dip come to room temperature before serving.
Roasted Vidalia Onion Rings
Forget fried, batter-coated onion rings and serve your burgers with these delectable roasted, sweet, tangy onions.
- 4 Vidalia onions
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
- Cut onions into 1/2-inch slices and separate into rings.
- Combine vinegar, olive oil, and seasoning in a large plastic bag; add onion rings and seal bag, shaking bag to coat onions; refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and grease a large, rimmed baking sheet.
- Remove onions from the bag and arrange in a single layer on the baking sheet.
- Roast for 30 minutes, turning every 10 minutes, or until onions are lightly browned and tender.
- Serve hot, sprinkled with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.