Sunday, May 16, 2010

Special Ingredient: Fiddleheads!

It is not very likely that you will be able to find fiddleheads, as they are native to Maine and are only available for a short time in the spring.  BUT if you can find fiddleheads at your local farmers market (or in Ottawa at just about any grocery store), you should definitely get your hands on these funny, little green vegetables.  Fiddleheads are the unfurled fronds of a baby fern. They are named for their shape, which resembles the end of a fiddle.  Fiddleheads contain even more antioxidants than blueberries and are rich in omega-3 fatty acids.  One journalist described the taste of fiddleheads as falling into the "umami" category, and indeed they are rather unique tasting, but definitely delicious.

It is recommended to boil fiddleheads for 10 minutes, though unfortunately I read that after I had already cooked mine, so I'm just hoping that I don't get sick!

fiddleheads recipe

Fiddleheads with Lemon and Parmesan

1 or 2 cloves garlic, minced
Lemon juice
Parmesan Cheese
(Adjust amounts based on how many cups of fiddleheads you have)

Heat a skillet over medium-high heat. Melt the butter and add the garlic. Saute for 30 seconds to 1 minute and then add the fiddleheads, salt and pepper. Saute for 7 to 10 minutes, or until the fiddleheads are tender but still bright green. Add lemon juice, sprinkle with Parmesan and serve.

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