From asparagus to ramps to rhubarb, our Real Food Right Now series celebrates the best fresh spring foods just as Mother Nature delivers them!
Since gardening was "invented" around 12,000 years ago, the skills and tools associated with the craft have evolved constantly. In fact, the traditional approach to gardening is to always update how it's done. To help you keep on the cutting edge, we'll cover a myriad of ways modern techniques and tools can be used to improve your gardening game.
When most Americans think of dill, pickles come to mind, but the herb was once prized by the ancient Greeks and Romans for its health benefits and magical properties. A staple in the cuisines of Scandinavia, Eastern Europe, North Africa and Russia, dill is actually an incredibly functional, versatile herb and one of the most nutrient dense, low-calorie foods you can eat.
Sassafras is kind of a big deal. Without it the whole history of the US might have played out differently. Also, we wouldn't have root beer or filé gumbo. Depending on whom you ask, sassafras is either a folk remedy or a dangerous carcinogen. We'll leave you to decide: bad seed or beneficial buddy?
Spring produce may not be the sexiest; juicy fruits like tomatoes, peaches and watermelons are still way down the road, but the end of winter calls for a strong dose of novelty, and luckily, spring has lots of that.
Like salt and black pepper, you probably reach for cooking oil for just about every meal you make. But have you ever wondered about the history of your canola oil, or what makes fancy extra virgin olive oil so expensive? Or what the heck margarine really is? Read on for all of this and more.
Are you ready to step up your wine game? In this Real Food overview, we'll touch on some familiar grapes and wines while providing references for further exploration. Most importantly, we'll look at the environmental impacts and sustainable potential of winemaking!
Snow peas and sugar snaps - is there a better snack to (healthily) satisfy what seems like a basic human need for crunchy foods? Their sweet, green pea-taste and super crisp texture are mighty fine on their own. Of course, they also taste great when tossed into a stir-fry, added to a salad or pickled in brine!
Fresh tarragon is a delightful sign of spring slowly melting into summer. The herb has enlivened French cuisine for centuries, adding a sweet dimension to countless dishes. If you love licorice (and even if you don't), you are likely to enjoy a little taste of tarragon in your cooking.
If ramps can become an overnight produce sensation, why not chives? Chives are the next best mild onion-y thing -- and super easy to grow on your own. On top of that, you can enjoy chives well into the summer, when ramps will be a distant memory.
Mother Nature doesn't wait for us to get organized, and the nettle may be in the dappled limelight of a forest near you right now, but if you dally, poof (!) she'll be long gone. With the nettle, you're not just cooking in the season. You're cooking in the moment.
Good chefs know that mint freshens up so much more than chewing gum, from salads and lamb to ice cream and pies; good gardeners know better than to let its wandering runners take over!
This week's real food is one of the world's most ancient grains. Nearly lost as industry flooded markets with grains that were easier to process, farro -- or emmer -- is making a comeback. A chewy, nutty comeback.
Our Real Food Right Now series has hatched out posts on many spring foods, from the history of ramps to the egg's endless uses. Now it's officially time to delve back into these in-season delights. Explore spring ingredients and find out why going green in spring is so important!
Whether the chicken or the egg came first, eggs probably win the "most versatile ingredient" competition hands down. Found in everything from sauces and custards to their own headlining items, like omelets and egg nog, eggs offer up "egg-cellent" dining entertainment from dawn to dusk.
Although the joys of cooking and snacking on the mighty mushroom are ancient, we still have much to discover when it comes to these tasty fungi. From hunting mushrooms in the forest to serving them up at the table, mushrooms offer an endless adventure!
Millet -- it's not just for birds! How did this ancient crop become synonymous with birdseed in the United States? And how did a plant once revered by the Chinese fall into obscurity? Thanks to millet's resistance to drought in an era of shifting climate, it's a grain to be rediscovered.