Fiddlehead ferns

1,586
11
Joined Jan 5, 2001
Need ideas for a spring menu. I don't really like them myself. It would be nice to take advantage of their cool shape but downplay the flavour a bit. Any ideas?
 
4,508
32
Joined Jul 31, 2000
Anneke,

Those crazy ferns just love morels :)

and they are quite good when dusted with seasoned flour and sauteed crisp.

Also with asparagus and orange
 
1,586
11
Joined Jan 5, 2001
Hi CC!

We just finished our morel fest. I guess we could still use them though.

Do you like them ferns? Or am I the weird one?
 
32
10
Joined Jul 15, 2001
Have heard that the easiest way to clean the fiddleheads is to shake them in a paper bag. The brown fuzzies are supposed to just rub off in the bag.

I like them steamed, then tossed in some wasabi mayonnaise............or stir-fried with lots of garlic.
 
4,508
32
Joined Jul 31, 2000
Anneke,

You are definatly weird :D (kidding)

I use fiddleheads mainly for a texture contrast, more than the center of the plate item.

I could live without them though. Much rather play with ramps anyway
 
1,586
11
Joined Jan 5, 2001
LOL!

Our sous chef is talking about soufflés and soups, and as an accompaniement to a "spring fish" which he hasn't chosen yet. He'd rather do away with it too..!

:rolleyes:
 
846
11
Joined Nov 29, 2001
Wow..to live in a place where I could again procure fiddlehead ferns. Their season is about 20 minutes long.

The only time I had them, I made them steamed, then sauteed with butter and splashed with vinegar. This suggestion came from a guy who was born and raised in New Hampsha.
 

pete

Moderator
Staff member
4,509
998
Joined Oct 7, 2001
This my be blasphemy, but I can't stand the little suckers. Everytime I have had them they are slimy (like okra or napoles) and never thought the flavor to be that good. Now give me some ramps and Im a happy guy.
 
1,403
37
Joined Jan 1, 2001
My favorite way to eat them is to make a quick refrigerator pickle with garlic and white balsamic vinegar. Easy!
Clean well and place fiddleheads in a glass bowl or jar with a few cloves of peeled garlic and a few sprigs of fresh tarragon. Stir together a volume of white balsamic vinegar equal to the volume of fiddleheads, about 1/4 as much water, a teaspoon or two kosher salt, about the same of sugar. Heat until just about boiling. Pour over fiddleheads, cover tightly and refrigerate overnight. They can be eaten the next day, but improve after a more 2-3 days. They are crunchy, and full of flavor in a wild, bright way.
Great with fresh trout (especially when cooked on a stick over a campfire).

Sorry my recipe is so non-specific as far as measurements (I usually hate that!) but I always just throw together refrigerator pickles-it's more a process than a recipe.
 
205
11
Joined Jun 1, 2001
Well, I love fiddlehead ferns with an abiding passion. Simply steamed, tossed with balsamic vinegar, pepper and a little goat cheese... or else roasted like asparagus in a touch of olive oil. Who needs asparagus when you've got fiddleheads, I say -- plus the cool shape is a bonus.

That "sauteed in flour" idea sounds pretty good, too.
 
205
11
Joined Jun 1, 2001
I thought of something else, on the "play up shape" theme... what about polenta, or maybe little savoury pancakes, with fiddleheads embedded in it/them, served with some sort of spring-like stew or vegetable mixture on top?
 
2,068
12
Joined Dec 30, 1999
Anneke,

Here is a reecipe you may enjoy trying:

FIDDLEHEAD FERN SALAD

16 fiddlehead ferns
3 tbsp hazelnut or walnut oil
3 tbsp raspberry vinegar
1 tsp sugar
Salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Grenoblase lettuce leaves
1 cup buna-shemiji mushrooms
2 tbsp snipped chives

Wash fiddlehead ferns thoroughly under running water. Steam until tender and set aside to cool.

In a screw-top jar combine hazelnut or walnut oil, raspberry vinegar and sugar.
Ê
Cover and shake well. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Ê
Line 4 salad plates with Grenoblase leaves. Arrange fiddlehead ferns and buna-shemiji atop lettuce. Sprinkle with chives.
Ê
Shake dressing well; pour over each serving.
 
Top Bottom