When spring blooms, it comes with a variety of unique fruits and vegetables. Fiddlehead ferns are one of those hard-to-find items that are extremely eye-catching. When young, the shoot looks like a tiny scroll with mini fern leaves growing throughout the center.
Fiddlehead ferns are technically a vegetable, though they are foraged. They must be harvested before the fern plant unfurls completely. Each plant is high in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids as well as iron and fiber. They are eaten as a leaf vegetable.
When preparing fiddleheads, it’s highly recommended to steam, sauté, or boil them. From there they can be sauteed with other delicate flavors such as butter and lemon. With a similar taste to asparagus, fiddlehead ferns also have grassy and nutty undertones.
Market research firm Datassential reports that the consumers with the highest knowledge of the vegetable live in the Northeast as it is known for growing in the wet soil of that region.
Click through the gallery to learn more about this Flavor of the Week and get inspired by one restaurant’s use of fiddlehead fern on its menu.