It is snowing in southeastern Pennsylvania as I write this, with three to five inches predicted to fall by evening. But at Wolff’s, tulips, crocuses, pansies, narcissus and daisies brighten the garden center, holding out hope for spring.
I don’t know about you, but I sure need that hope. I need to start noticing that the days really are getting longer, and that the calendar is moving forward toward spring holidays and events. Spring break arrives next week at the university where I work part-time, and that will mean it’s time to open the blinds in my apartment, let the sunlight in and start some spring cleaning.
While I clear away the cobwebs in my apartment, I will also make some favorite “clean and cleansing” Wolff’s spring recipes:
Clean & Cleansing
Here’s a healthy way to lift a glass on St. Patrick’s Day! If you’re craving a smooth, sweet, creamy and minty smoothie, this one blends mint green tea, raw honey, frozen spinach, yogurt and real mint!
The kale in the delightfully crunchy Spicy Mango-Kale Salad is very low maintenance: wash it, take out the spine of each leaf, cut it into strips, squeeze it in your hands a couple times to soften it up and then throw it into your salad bowl.
Delicate and herb-rich Butterhead-Pea-Tarragon Salad makes use of many spring vegetables and herbs. Its base is mild and tender butterhead lettuce, which is high in Vitamin A, phosphorus and fiber. At Wolff’s, butterhead lettuce comes from a farm in Telford PA, where the Gehman family grows lettuce using a sustainable hydroponic system.
March moves us along toward Easter and Passover, and after these April holidays, we will be even closer to the date of the last frost! Here are two of our favorite easy side dishes to pass around the holiday table:
Prepare this Cauliflower-Almond Rice in stages, over a couple days, and watch the final steps come together easily for your holiday meal. The cardamom gives this recipe a warm and soothing yet exotic flavor. If you don’t have cardamom, ginger will work well too.
Dill is one of those distinctive herbs that wakes up your taste buds and lets you know that the herbs are alive and powerful this season. Blended with sour cream, cucumbers and a little garlic, salt and sugar, the dill in this salad won’t overpower you, but it will still beckon you outdoors with each fresh-from-the-garden bite.
Ashley Wolff notes that this salad accompanies many dishes quite well. That makes it a perfect choice for a holiday side.
Warmer days draw us out of hibernation and into the company of friends. Spring is an ideal time to invite friends and family over for brunch, whether for a holiday like Easter or Mother’s Day, or just for some time to linger over coffee or mimosas. Here are two recipes I love:
The frittata is an excellent brunch dish, bringing a protein boost to balance out the sweet breads and other indulgences of the brunch table.
In this caramelized vegetable frittata recipe, the bell peppers here are crammed with Vitamin C and a lot of potassium and Vitamin B-6. Likewise, zucchini brings you plenty of these vitamins and minerals, along with a good jolt of magnesium and dietary fiber and even a bit of iron and calcium. Hurrah! Fresh local tomatoes supply Vitamin A, which boosts the immune system and helps with vision.
Oh, my goodness. Have you ever tried making savory crepes? These are filled with cheddar cheese, apples, caramelized onions and ham. Try them with fresh, local Vidalia onions and some of the local gourmet cheese available in our farm market!
Crafts with the Kiddos
Holidays are a great time to plan crafts with your kids, your grandkids, nieces or nephews. Even on a gray or cold day, the focused activity will help pass the time and lift everyone’s spirits.
Dyeing Easter Eggs Naturally
Pick up Wolff’s locally raised eggs and follow these tips for natural easter egg dyes. Did you know, for instance, that you can use paprika to create light red dye? Find more DIY dyes in this article!
Nesting for Easter
Gather some shredded wheat, coconut, brown sugar and butter, and your young family members will be able to bake delightful Easter “nests” they can fill with jelly beans, grapes or even spring flowers!