In case you didn't know, fiddleheads are a type of fern the grows in the New England area (as well as other areas worldwide. They are the unfurled fronds of a fern.
Don't eat them before cooking! They will make your tummy hurt.
I prepared them for an appetizer yesterday, and upon presenting them to The Boyfriend he looked at me like I had lost my mind. 'Am I supposed to eat that?' he says.
Of course! And they were so good!
They are extra-special because they are only available once a year for a couple weeks ONLY. And that's it, they're gone!
They have a 'grassy' taste and texture- think asparagus or artichoke. They're delish with something fatty/salty- like prosciutto di parma!
I got a super-simple recipe from MSNBC oddly enough.
Fiddlehead Ferns with Brown Butter and Prosciutto
1 lb fiddle head ferns, washed and trimmed (cut off a couple centimeters of the cut end)
12 paper thin slices of prosciutto
3 tbsp brown butter (recipe follows)
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
- We are going to boil the fiddleheads. Add about 1 quart of water to large pot and bring to a boil.
- Grab a large bowl and fill it halfway with ice water. Set aside.
- Place a colander in sink.
- When water is boiling, add fiddleheads. Cook one minute (do not overcook!).
- Remove fiddleheads. Pour in colander to drain. Then pour the fiddleheads into the ice water, submerging completely.
- While they are in ice water, brown butter. Add the 3 tbsp of butter to a saucepan over med heat.
- The butter is going to start to turn a brownish color. Start to stir constantly. We are looking for the butter to turn a brown color and have a nutty aroma. Once the butter begins to froth at the edges, keep stirring for about one more minute, and remove from heat. The butter will keep cooking in the pan.
- Grab the plates and arrange a slice of prosciutto on each one.
- Add the fiddleheads to the pan with the butter, and toss gently. Add pepper and salt.
- Top the slices of prosciutto with the fiddleheads, and voila! Spring's finest. Serve at once.