What Are Your Favorite Spring Recipes? Here Are a Few to Try This Season!

As the days get longer and springtime (finally!) rolls around, you likely start to crave lighter meals made with bright, fresh ingredients. Retire your usual favorite spring recipes in favor of something new and exciting with these delicious dishes from around the web.

Grilled Artichokes [oprah.com]
Create a tasty side dish for chicken, steak, or fish with Oprah’s recipe for flavorful grilled artichokes. Grilling these layered veggies on a stovetop grill gives them a bit of a blackened taste, and the homemade dipping sauce that goes with them adds even more flavor.

Sautéed Fiddlehead Ferns [localfoods.about.com]
Fiddlehead ferns come into season during the spring, which makes this dish very fresh and delicious. This recipe also takes just 10 minutes to prepare and 10 minutes to cook, so it makes quite a quick last-minute side dish on busy weeknights.

Risotto With Prosciutto and Peas [realsimple.com]
If you’re looking for something heartier and more filling, this rich, creamy risotto recipe is the perfect choice come spring. Thin prosciutto adds a salty taste, while the sweet spring peas make it perfect for warmer weather. Cook the risotto in white wine and chicken broth to add a deep, complex flavor throughout, then serve it with your favorite grilled meats or as an entree with a fresh salad.

Nutrition Tips for Vegetarians

Whether you want to show support for animals or simply choose to avoid meat products, becoming a vegetarian can be a very healthy lifestyle choice. Though it decreases your risk for many long-term diseases, a vegetarian diet can make it difficult to get the protein and other nutrients a person needs to stay healthy and energized.

These vegetarian eating tips can help you create a balanced, meat-free diet:

  • Make sure that you get enough protein by incorporating nuts, beans, peas and soy products into meals and snacks.
  • Keep up with your necessary iron intake to create healthy oxygen absorption in the blood by eating a lot of spinach, kidney beans, lentils, black-eyed peas and iron-fortified cereals.
  • Choose calcium-fortified soy milk to replace the calcium normally found in regular cow’s milk.
  • Consider vegetarian alternatives to traditionally meat-based foods to keep your diet exciting (for example, bean burritos, veggie lo mein, or vegetarian lasagna).

Tips for Vegetarians [USDA]

Find these Fresh Veggies at the Farmers Market this Fall!

One of the best things about farmers markets is that they offer fresh veggies, in season. Of course, since growing seasons change, farmers market visitors will find different produce from week to week and month to month. For many crops, fall marks the end of the season, so you'll find fewer berries and tomatoes than you might've seen in July.

However, some fruits and vegetables come into their own in the fall. Here are few to find at your farmers market in the next few months.

A hearty gourd, many varieties of squash appear throughout the fall. You might find zucchini and butternut squash. You'll also see pumpkins, another member of the squash family. These veggies make welcome additions to pies, risottos, and much more.

In many places, the peak of the apple harvest lasts from late summer through fall, so you'll likely find quite an abundance of apples at the market. They're great as snacks (either on their own or with peanut butter), and also in baked treats like pies.

Radishes also make great snacks, eaten either alone or with hummus. They're delightful in salads, and even work well in stews.

A root vegetable with a distinctive flavor, the turnip might be an acquired taste. Prepared well, however, they're often quite enjoyable. Like radishes, turnips can be added to stews; like potatoes, they can be mashed or roasted for a tasty side dish.

Say Cheese: Five Great Classic Cheesecakes

Cheesecake is one of the most popular dessert dishes out there – it’s relatively simple to prepare and can support a wide variety of flavors. While a plain cheesecake is often satisfying enough, you can kick it up a notch with some of these exciting and unique cheesecake recipes.

–          New York style cheesecake has rightfully secured a space in America’s palates. As made by the famous deli Junior’s in Brooklyn, it’s characterized by the use of heavy cream to make the cake exceptionally smooth.

–          You can add a variety of fruits to the cheesecake batter during the baking process, but one of the most popular is pumpkin. The sweet, earthy flavor of the gourd is exceptional.

–          Cheesecake is very popular in Asian countries, and people there add a number of unique ingredients to their batter. One that always gets people talking is matcha, sweet green tea powder. It turns the cake an attractive color, adding a deep, complex flavor.

–          In St. Louis, they make what is called “Gooey Butter Cake” by baking a traditional flour cake with a second cheesecake layer atop it. This makes a delicious mélange of the two flavors.

–          Marbled cheesecakes are gorgeous to look at and delicious to eat. To make the best marbling, spoon 2/3 of the cheesecake batter into the crust, then melt chocolate chips and swirl them into the remaining third.

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