Easy recipes to get the most out of spring’s freshest vegetables.
When I see patches of green finally return to the otherwise brown and dreary landscape, I know it’s early spring in Vermont.
It’s a sign of rejuvenation and, to celebrate, I indulge in everything green. Many early spring vegetables are good sources
of lutein and zeaxanthin, phytochemicals that accumulate in the eyes and help prevent age-related macular degeneration, a
leading cause of blindness in older people. Leafy greens are also rich in beta carotene, a potent antioxidant.
This bumper crop of quick recipes is a great way to get some spring “greens” into your diet. Hawaiian Ginger-Chicken Stew
is packed with zesty
mustard greens. Greek Orzo Stuffed Peppers
combine baby spinach and feta cheese with tangy sun-dried tomatoes. Green leaf lettuce and crispy snow peas give crunch to
sweet-and-salty Vietnamese Tofu-Noodle
. Fresh scallions and cilantro adorn the gorgeous Cashew Salmon with Apricot Couscous
asparagus turns up in Crab Salad Melts
. With these
delicious recipes I can kick off the spring season in fine green style.
MONDAY: Hawaiian Ginger-Chicken Stew
chicken stew has a bold ginger-flavored broth and provides a whole serving of dark leafy greens in each bowl. We tried it
with frozen chopped mustard greens (available in large supermarkets) and it was even quicker to prepare and just as
delicious. Serve with brown rice.
TUESDAY: Cashew Salmon with Apricot
—Yogurt sauce flavored with lemon, cumin and cilantro tops this Indian-inspired grilled salmon and apricot
couscous. Try this quick, easy recipe for entertaining. Serve with steamed snap peas and a glass of gewürztraminer.
WEDNESDAY: Crab Salad Melts
—This crab and asparagus
melt is delicious for a light spring dinner or lunch. You can use any type of crabmeat—including more affordable options
available in pouches or cans near other canned fish or in tubs in the seafood department. Serve with a tossed salad.
THURSDAY: Greek Orzo Stuffed Peppers
brightly colored bell peppers in the microwave to save time and then stuff them with orzo, spinach and feta. This basic
recipe will work with almost any filling—try substituting different types of cheese, herbs or beans. Serve with whole-wheat
pita bread and cucumber salad.
FRIDAY: Vietnamese Tofu-Noodle Lettuce
—Here we toss rice noodles with crunchy vegetables, fresh herbs, tofu and a light, sweet, tart and salty Vietnamese
dressing flavored with fish sauce and wrap the mixture in lettuce leaves. For a vegetarian version, use reduced-sodium soy
sauce or tamari in place of the fish sauce. Pass the mixture, lettuce leaves and sauce separately so everyone can make their