Foraged fiddleheads and ramps with shiitake mushrooms
I found beautiful, fleeting, foraged fiddleheads at Whole Foods and just had to have them. They were tucked in a corner of the product section right next to foraged ramps! I decided to prepare them in some butter with shiitakes mushrooms (sensing a foraged theme?) and a squeeze of fresh lemon.
Fiddleheads have always been a special delicacy to Mainers (🙋🏻♀️) and The Maine Thing describes it best:
“Fiddleheads are the coiled tips of young ostrich ferns that grow near brooks, rivers and lakes in Maine during late April, May and early June, depending on when the snow has melted. Because they need to be picked before they unfurl into the large fronds of the fern, Maine’s spring fiddlehead-picking season is short, only four to six weeks long. With their short growing season, this wild delicacy is a highly coveted sign of spring renewal.”
VEGETARIAN / GLUTEN FREE / SERVES: 2
1 lb foraged fiddleheads
1 lb shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
1/2 lb foraged ramps
3 tbl butter
sprinkle of salt
Takes about an 30 minutes.
Fiddleheads: Wash and trim the fiddlehead stalks. Steam for 10 minutes, then remove from heat and set aside.
Ramps: Cut in half where the green meets the white. Dice both the stalks and the leaves, keeping separate.
Shiitakes: Remove the stems and slice thinly.
In a large pan, sauté the shiitakes and diced ramp stalks in butter until the mushrooms start to turn golden brown (about 15 minutes). Then add the fiddleheads and sauté for an additional 5 minutes. Toss in the diced ramp greens at the end.
Sprinkle with salt and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.
Carefully wash and trim
I’m no expert on preparing wild fiddleheads, so head over to this article in Food52 if you’re unfamiliar. The short of it is be sure to carefully wash and inspect the fiddleheads. Discard any that are mushy, brown, or uncurled. Trim the ends of the stalk off and then halve the ramps where the green meets the white. Dice the stalk and the greens, keeping separate.