Spring is almost here, and what better way to celebrate than to gather all your favorite spring produce and try a bunch of new recipes to let it shine? From Potato Salad with Smoked Trout, Horseradish and Chives to simple salads and revamped green goddess dressing, we have a collection of bright, fresh recipes that should keep you busy all season. Here are 17 of our favorites:
This recipe—inspired by chef Joshua McFadden, of Portland, Oregon's Ava Gene's—is a play on Northern Italian tonnato. Our version skips the veal and instead pairs tuna with sweet snap peas and peppery radishes. Be sure to use oil-packed tuna here; tuna packed in water lacks flavor and has a drier, mealier texture.
Classic mojo verde from the Canary Islands is a sauce made by blending cilantro and/or parsley, garlic, green peppers, cumin and oil. But on Tenerife, the largest of the islands, we learned a different version of mojo verde that included avocado and almonds that gave the sauce a creamy, velvety richness. We adapted that sauce for pairing with simple sautéed cumin-seasoned chicken cutlets.
Kuku sabzi is traditionally served at Persian New Year’s feasts; it is jammed with herbs to symbolize rebirth. Whenever you make it, baking—treating it more like a cake than an omelet—avoids stove-top frying and flipping.
Classic shakshuka is a skillet dish of eggs poached in a spicy tomato-based sauce. For our version, inspired by Limor Chen at Delamina East in London, we opted for leeks, spinach, peas and a sprinkling of feta cheese. For a little spark of heat, add this Aleppo Pepper.
Whereas traditional arakas kokkinistos is pea-centric, we've included a generous amount of potatoes and some carrots to give this stew-like dish enough substance and heft that it can be served as a vegetarian main. Lemon zest and juice added at the end, along with a generous dose of fresh herbs, brightens the flavors.
These pan-fried, crisp-crusted quinoa cakes, from our latest cookbook Cookish, can be served on their own with a side dish, or made into sandwiches by tucking them into buns with toppings. For extra richness, garnish your cakes with a mixture of mayonnaise and fresh herbs.
In Vietnam, meatballs are often skewered and grilled, but for a quick weeknight meal, a skillet does a fine job. You could serve these over steamed rice or rice vermicelli, but we liked them with herbs and lettuce leaves for wrapping, along with a lime juice and fish sauce mixture for drizzling.
Shrimp salad seasoned with dill, capers, mustard and lemon tops fennel-dusted baguette toasts for these easy hors d'oeuvres, perfect for any spring get-together. For convenience, buy already cooked shrimp, or if you prefer, you can poach your own.
Using both chopped basil (mixed with the cooked chicken) and whole basil leaves (stirred in at the end) provides a wonderfully full herbal flavor. Just don’t begin cooking until all ingredients are prepared. The stir-fry comes together quickly, so make sure everything is ready and close at hand.
Here, a modest amount of sour cream both binds the salad and adds a tanginess that, along with the pungency of the horseradish, works well with the salty richness of smoked trout. Don’t dress the potatoes until they've cooled to the point of barely warm to the touch. If the potatoes are hot, they'll cause the dressing to break.
Any number of herbs are delicious in this dressing; we like parsley’s clean, herbaceous background, the mellow allium note from chives and tarragon’s distinctive licorice flavor. Shaved radishes, steamed asparagus, grated hard-cooked eggs and crisp romaine and endive leaves are the perfect canvas for this update on a classic.
The classic French sauce gribiche is similar to mayonnaise, but made with cooked, not raw, egg yolks, and seasoned with capers and herbs. For this dish, instead of adding capers to the sauce, we use caper brine; the capers themselves we fry to create a crisp garnish for the sauced asparagus.
In our adaption of Olia Hercules's simple yet succulent pot-roasted chicken from her cookbook “Summer Kitchens,” we coat the bird inside and out with garlicky, herby crème fraîche and refrigerate it for at least two hours or up to 24 hours before roasting. The crème fraîche not only adheres the garlic and herbs to the bird. Its high fat content also helps with browning and adds flavor.
This unusual salad was inspired by a dish we tasted at Trattoria Masuelli San Marco in Milan, Italy. Celery brings snappy texture and flavor while almonds add crunch. We especially like the rich nuttiness of Spanish marcona almonds that have been fried and salted, but regular blanched almonds that have been toasted and cooled work well, too.
Merluza en salsa verde con almejas, or hake in green sauce with clams, is a classic dish from the Basque Country in northern Spain. Fish fillets are gently simmered until flaky in a parsley, garlic and olive oil sauce, then finished with cooked clams in their shells. We adapted that formula and devised a method that requires only a food processor and a skillet, but yields delicious results in about an hour.
This risotto takes just 25 minutes, leaving you plenty of time to enjoy the spring weather. Make a quick five-ingredient homemade vegetable broth—its fresh, clean flavor won't compete with the other ingredients—and stir fresh herbs at the end.