Thursday, September 24, 2009

It's official - spring is here!

Well spring is finally here! The days are getting a little longer, the nights not so cold, and all the beautiful flowers and blossoms are starting to appear in the fields.

The best thing about spring is the fact that after a long cold winter, you can dramatically see the changes in the flavours and colors. Spring lamb are here, citrus is in full swing, artichokes are back, and one of my favourite products, asparagus (both white and green) has just appeared. Spring also means local morels...great!

These new flavours are really brought to life with the use of softer techniques. Our venison is now poached rather than roasted, the fish is confit and grilled, and the king prawns are cooked in an escabehce. All fresh and vibrant - just what spring is all about!

With the change of season comes a change of menu... Each spring I try to design a dish around the new season's milk fed baby lamb and this year is no exception! There is just something special about the animal itself, and the joy of working with a comlete beast (or baby…..). Braising the shoulder, confit the belly, slow cooking the neck, roasting the leg and saute the saddle, is just something I love to do!

The accompaniments changes depending on what is in, but normally simple ingredients like broad beans, peas, organic single clove garlic and, of course, asparagus!

It’s a fantastic time of year, one full of colors and new aroma's, shapes and sizes, and things I haven’t seen, well, for almost a year…