It’s hard for me to choose a favorite season. I love the coziness of fall, the sunshine of summer, the intimate winter nights, and the renewal of spring. Spring in California feels rather abrupt. One day you look up and all the trees have beautiful flowers. It feels almost instant. Which is where we are now. There is fresh air, sun, and thanks to a hefty amount of rain, quite a bit of green. So it felt appropriate to kick off March with a round-up of my favorite vegetarian spring recipes.
Vegetarian Spring Recipes for Dinner
I always joke that it’s hard for me to make a recipe with asparagus because my preferred method of eating asparagus is to lightly grill it then toss with a bit of olive oil, salt, and lemon. However, it’s far from the truth. I love having an arsenal of asparagus recipes so that I can get my fill during the short season. I could easily eat asparagus for every meal during spring.
- Millet Polenta with Asparagus
- Asparagus Spring Pasta
- Asparagus Stir Fry
- Asparagus and Eggs
- Grilled Cheese Crepes with Shaved Asparagus
I start to feel bad for the radish. Often relegated to a side salad, these crisp and slightly spicy beauties can be a lovely star of a meal. My favorite way to prepare radishes is to roast them with a bit of olive oil. The heat mellows the bite of the radish but really brings the flavor to the forefront.
- Spicy Lentil Tacos with Radish Salsa
- Buttered Radishes with Poached Egg
- Buttered Radish and Ricotta Toast.
I have a soft spot for rhubarb- it’s a family thing. We’ve had plants in our family that my great-grandfather planted and while I doubt I will ever get them out to California, I plan on planting rhubarb wherever we live. My favorite recipes for rhubarb are the non-traditional including chutneys and enchilada sauces.
- Curried Lentils with Rhubarb Chutney
- Swiss Chard and Black Bean Enchiladas with Rhubarb Sauce
- Noodle Bowl with Kale and Spicy Rhubarb Sauce
Peas are one of the few items I always have stashed away in the freezer but the flavor of fresh always brings a burst of spring. I also love to grow peas, primarily for the pea shoots. These delicate greens are a lovely topping for crostini or a nice addition to salads. Look for pea shoots at the market and use within a day or so of purchasing.
- White Bean Salad with Pea Shoots
- Pea and Farro Salad with Lemon-Yogurt Dressing
- Vegetable Lo-Mein with Peas
While kale appears almost everywhere now, I’m still a spinach girl. I love the delicate leaves that wilt with ease but also can serve as an easy salad base. I toss it raw onto pizza, use it as a base for pesto, and build big salads with baby spinach. It’s easy to grow and is best in the cool weather.
It’s hard to think spring and not go straight to strawberries. It’s like the treat for coming out of winter. There’s nothing quite like biting into a perfectly ripe strawberry. This list is also what I’m calling the ‘breakfast for dinner.’ We occasionally eat breakfast for dinner and pancakes smothered with fresh berries is just about the best.