May is the first month of the year in the cycle of harvesting local food in sustainable quantity from our local farms, our own gardens, and the wilds. The blossoming cherry, apple and peach trees are exuberant reminders of the harvests that are some months away, but bring a cheery end to the bluster of winter. The asparagus is poking its spears from an improbably barren-looking field at our local “pick-your-own” farm.
And the farmers’ markets – other than the year-round diehards – are resuming as the community comes out to chat and the farmers offer green garlic, scallions, radishes, asparagus, rhubarb, and early greens. The cuisine of this moment is uncomplicated except in the flavorful combination of simple, very fresh ingredients topped with young herbs. I am looking forward to the medleys of asparagus, leeks and fava beans, radish salads with pea shoots, tiny lettuces with tinier herbs, green garlic on everything.