Fruit and veg to enjoy in April
The Vegetarian Society guide informs us that these are the fruit and veg at their best in April:
Artichoke, Beetroot, Carrots, Chicory, New Potatoes, Kale, Morel Mushrooms, Parsnips, Radishes, Rhubarb, Rocket, Sorrel, Spinach, Spring Greens, Spring Onions, Watercress
We’ve picked some of our favourite ingredients from this list and shared some tasty suggestions for your April meal plans below. We covered carrots in our guide to what’s good to eat in February, and beetroot, rhubarb, spring greens and spring onions in what’s good to eat in March, so do take a look there for even more inspiration!
Spring is here, and so are the new potatoes! A shocking 4.4 million whole potatoes are binned every day in the UK, but there are so many ways to use them up that they needn’t be. The perfect accompaniment to a fillet of your favourite fish or a roast chicken or leg of lamb, these versatile spuds can be steamed, boiled or roasted, and they’re particularly delicious served with a knob of butter melted over them. On a warm day, you can’t beat a potato salad – just boil them up ahead of time, let them cool and then mix with mayo and finely chopped red onion or shallot. You can also use them in many recipes that call for other kinds of potato; they’d work well in our curried potato, kale and onion hash with poached eggs, for example.
It can be difficult to get excited about kale, but this ultra-healthy member of the cabbage family is fresh this month and a great way to add extra nutrition to a meal, whether steamed as a side dish or incorporated into a recipe. As well as the curried potato, kale and onion hash we just mentioned, it’s a fantastic addition to our mouthwatering ‘Bang Anything In’ breakfast burrito (to which you can also add anything else you need to use up), and it’s ideal for adding to soups and stews, such as our hearty chorizo, kale and white bean stew. If you’re really on a health kick, you could even blend it into a smoothie – there’s no need to cook it first!
Add some crunch, colour and peppery flavour to your favourite salads this month – radish season is here! As well as slicing them up and putting them in salads, they’re great for eating whole, so why not enjoy them as a healthy snack with some of our delicious hummus or beetroot hummus? Radishes also add the perfect finishing touch to simple homemade kimchi, a Korean condiment that can bring a tangy taste to a host of your favourite dishes.
Radishes aren’t the only veg with a peppery taste fresh in this month – rocket is, too! As well as using rocket to make a salad, you can also sprinkle rocket leaves over all your favourite pizzas (or on our Moroccan crispy lamb flatbreads) for a healthy extra topping that packs plenty of punch. Serve rocket on top of our red onion and goat’s cheese tart along with watercress – also fresh this month – and if you have leftover roast lamb from your Easter lunch, use it to make our delicious Welsh lamb, rocket and parmesan risotto.
It’s always amazing how much spinach reduces in size when it’s cooked, so even when you think you have a lot of it to use up, you’d be surprised how easy it is to add even a seemingly large quantity of it to your favourite dishes! It’s a great way to boost the nutritional value of a meal, working well in anything from breakfast muffin frittatas to spiced cauliflower, spinach & chickpea tacos. It’s so versatile that it doesn’t really even matter whether it’s listed in the recipe or not, so feel free to add it to pasta dishes, stir-fries (like our quick mince stir-fry), stews, casseroles and anything else you fancy.
You’ll find even more tasty meal ideas in our recipe bank, and we’ll be back next month with a guide to what’s good to eat in May!