This week's seemingly endless rain might put a damper on your outdoor activities, but we really can't complain. As the rain soaks the earth in puddles and rivulets, it nourishes the roots of crops and wild plants alike. The grass grows faster than we can mow it, our local farmer friends rejoice to see the first tender asparagus shoots, and here in the kitchen we're still reveling in the harvest of wild leeks. We've included them fresh and roasted in our meal this week, and we've also pickled some in a vivid saffron brine, hoping to preserve their flavor throughout the year

People often refer to the early spring as the "Hungry Season", when the winter storage crops have run their course and the spring plantings haven't yet matured. The pantries are empty, and our bodies crave fresh, green, new growth. However, I disagree with that title: there's no need to go hungry if you know where to look. Walking through the woods this week, I saw just how perfectly the earth in season provides for us. Abundant stands of stinging nettles lined the path, and I gathered armfuls as I went. While daunting to the bare skin, nettles are harmless once cooked, and they're also rich in minerals to replenish the winter-hungry body. "Hungry Season" just doesn't fit, at least not here--there is food to be found all around.

Still, spring emerges slowly out of winter. It's going to be chilly at the market tomorrow, and we've prepared a meal with some warming character to it, to bid a fond farewell to winter (once and for all!) while welcoming spring and looking forward to warmer days. Root vegetables, roasted with a slight touch of brown rice syrup, will fortify you against the damp and cold. The rest of the meal is lighter, more appropriate to the spring season. We've even included some saffron to brighten our spirits in these grey days. And we anticipate the summer bounty with our first green garlic from Blue Heron Farm.

Special thanks as always to our providers:

Muddy Fingers Farm, Blue Heron Farm, Remembrance Farm, Stick & Stone Farm, Finger Lakes Farmshed, the woods, and our kitchen garden here in Trumansburg.

We hope you are staying warm and dry!

Rice and Beanly Yours,

The Macro Mamas

|| Menu for May 6, 2017 ||

Saffron Rice with Wild Leeks and Sweet Peas

Rosemary White Beans with Lemon Zest

Roasted Root Vegetables with Garlic and Saffron-Pickled Leeks

Broccoli Gremolata

Garlicky Sautéed Greens

Pickled Cabbage & Apple Salad with Watermelon Radish and French Sorrel

Field Greens with Lemon Poppyseed Dressing

 

|| Desserts ||

"Warmer Climates" Cake: Vanilla Cake with Coconut-Lime Icing and Mango Layers

Pistachio Shortcake with Elderberry-Poached Pears and Coconut Cream

Rhubarb-Apple Crisp with Currants and Orange Zest (GF)

Strawberry-Rhubarb Tart with Almond Frangipane (GF)

Heavenly Tapioca (GF)

Lemon & Strawberry Parfait (GF)

|| Small Treats ||

Black Sesame Chocolate Chip Cookies

Almond Cookies (GF)

 

|| Beverages ||

Spiced Masala Chai

Hot Lemon Ginger

New York-Style Lemonade