Finally, after a long winter (especially in the southern states) with pumpkin and apple in everything, spring is finally here and with it comes its usual, undeniable energy. Chefs across the country are saying ‘so long’ to root vegetables and getting excited at the prospect of the first peas of the season or tender asparagus (after months of woody stems).
As the season changes, so do menus. So, we’ve put together some of the Riviana Foodservice team’s favourite spring ingredients and meals to inspire you before ordering your stock for the week ahead.
Herbs, herbs, herbs!
For months you’ve probably been working with heavy ingredients and menu items like root vegetables and stews. They certainly have their place within a winter menu, but as spring starts to show itself, the main component of your meals becomes much lighter. Instead of balancing out with garnishes, you could start championing herbs themselves. Warm weather brings out fennel, parsley and basil to round out recipes and add fresh, light taste.
The return of colour
Spring is the beginning of the colourful vegetable season: fava beans, peas, green beans, as well as red radishes, strawberries, avocado, broccoli! You can really start to refresh your menu with vibrant spring colours.
One of the first spring foods many regions get is rhubarb. After a winter of desserts based on citrus, nuts and chocolate, rhubarb offers a lovely change. But don’t just immediately jump to desserts – if you’re cooking with rhubarb, the leftover liquid is great in cocktails or you could make a tart rhubarb jam to serve with your breakfast menu.
With the warmer weather, your customers will no longer be looking for ways to warm themselves up from the inside out. You can begin experimenting with chilled foods like ice creams, sorbets, caramels or salads and mini pies.
We get very excited about spring at Riviana when the foodservice scene really starts to ramp up and there are so many exciting events on with our customers and partners. We love hearing from you – so jump over to our Facebook page and let us know what you’re up to. Are you launching a new spring menu? Catering for several events this month? Experimenting with some new ingredients? We’d love to hear about it.