Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Eating Ferns for Dinner

Long time no see people!


Its totally my fault.

We've been busy.....

With fun things like traveling and singing and cooking and working!

Today though I want to throw up a post I've been planning for a while.

I was at the Farmers Market a couple of weeks (or over a month) ago and came across Fiddlehead Ferns!

How crazy right?

Fiddlehead ferns are usually a foraged item; "Fiddlehead greens are the furled fronds of a young fern,[1] harvested for use as a vegetable. Left on the plant, each fiddlehead would unroll into a new frond (circinate vernation). As fiddleheads are harvested early in the season before the frond has opened and reached its full height, they are cut fairly close to the ground. Fiddleheads have antioxidant activity, are a source of Omega 3 and Omega 6, and are high in iron and fibre." source

So I had to purchase them.

I did a quick google search to get an idea of recipes, and it looked like most of them were stir-fry-ish things so I made my own.

To start things off I made a pot of brown rice. We all know how brown rice is better health-wise for you than white, but I just LOVE the chewiness of brown rice. Mmmm, yum!

Anyway, onto the feature of the dinner....We had some shrimp in the freezer, so I sauteed a little bit of onion, garlic and bacon until it was done, added the ferns, a couple of handfuls of fresh spinach and after a few minutes added the thawed shrimp.
After the shrimp was all nice and pink in a separate pan I melted some butter, added some flour and let that get brown.....also called making a roux.
Into the roux I juiced a nice big lemon and stirred the sauce into the stir-fry, and plated it up onto a big place of chewy brown rice.

Some big shreds of Parmesan cheese on top a sprinkle of kosher salt and ta-da!
Pour yourself a big glass of red and use a fancy napkin and you've got a pretty darn good dinner for two!

Ok, real life... this was Sooo Sooo good!
The ferns really reminded me of asparagus/grass.....but in a good way.
And in all honesty, if you didn't take a bite of JUST the fern, you'd just taste the spinach/bacon/lemon wonderfulness.
Mr. Gill really liked this dish.
So-if you see fiddleheads at your local market-pick them up....just remember to at least cook them slightly, because they have a little bit of toxicity if they are eaten raw!

And if you don't have a farmer's market but DO have a Trader Joe's, Mr. Gill and I saw some there when we were in California.
So check them out!

Jenny G

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