Spring

Kale salad with orange vinaigrette

Kale salad with orange dressing

One of the most fun and most rewarding projects I did last year was initiating a community garden. Every year we organize a neighborhood plant swap and plant sale, which is great, but I thought it would be nice to…

Nettle lovage spring soup

Nettle lovage spring soup

On our new allotment, there are no nettles. I am sure I will be grateful for that in the long run, but right now, after the long winter largely devoid of fresh greens, nettles are my favorite vegetable. Luckily our…

Poached rhubarb with yogurt cream

poached rhubarb with yogurt cream

I have complained at length about our new allotment: it’s smaller, there’s too much shade, the soil is in a much worse state. But there’s actually one very good thing about it: the rhubarb plantation. Probably because a good part…

Edible garden in April

repotting

When spring starts 3 weeks later than normal (though what is normal anymore?), mid-April will find the gardener very busy, busier than usual in this busiest gardening month. Throw in an unexpected (but very welcome) writing assignment with the usual…

Spinach quiche with buckwheat crust

Spinach quiche with buckwheat crust

On Saturday I sowed the first seeds directly in the ground – finally!- and spinach was the very first vegetable I sowed. So no, this quiche was not homegrown, but hopefully will be in about six weeks. Because I am…

Asparagus frittata

Asparagus frittata

Probably the best investment you can make if you have a vegetable garden is sowing a packet of asparagus seeds. Yes, you have to wait 3 years before the plants are strong enough to take regular picking, but after that…

Spinach, citrus and feta salad

Spinach, citrus and feta

The only spinach in my childhood was a frozen puree. I had no idea what the plant looked like and it is a testimony to my parents’ cooking skills that they were able to turn the indiscernible khaki mass into…

Rhubarb tart with orange custard

Rhubarb tart with orange custard

Some of the questions I had to answer while typing the recipe: – How do you draw a snowflake? – If you could control one element, which would you choose? (Answer: water) – How do you say “strawberries” in French?…

Broccoli rabe pizza

Broccoli rabe pizza

Do you grow broccoli rabe (also known as crimi di rapa, broccoli raab, turnip broccoli)? If you don’t, but have a veg patch, however tiny, please, consider it. In Joy Larkom´s classic `Grow your own vegetables` that makes most other…

May bowl

may bowl pouring wine

Because I was born in an Eastern European communist country, and my husband grew up in Western democracy, our childhood memories are sometimes rather different. To him, 1st May has always been just the day after Queen’s Day. But in…

Ricotta al forno with spring herbs

Ricotta al forno with spring herbs

The wonderful thing about perennial vegetables is that in spring they grow a lot faster than their annual counterparts. Because they start growing from well established roots instead of having to germinate first and make roots later, in our edible…

Rhubarb cobbler

Rhubarb cobbler

It seems that the two main harvest from the allotment at the moment are rhubarb and daffodils. No problem, I like both a lot. They both signal the start of a new garden season; daffodils are the first flowers that…

Potato pancakes with cold herb sauce

Potato pancakes with cold herb sauce

Isn’t it funny how when you have leftover egg whites all recipes you come across call for egg yolks and vice versa? Or does this just happen to me? A couple of recent baking projects left me with 4 egg…

Rhubarb tarts

Rhubarb tarts

Finally, there’s something else to harvest from the allotment other than weeds: rhubarb! I blanched one plant by covering it with a black bucket and it was ready for harvest on Sunday. Every year I carefully consider the first rhubarb…