One of the most enjoyable parts of home cooking for me is being introduced to new ingredients. I have heard of green garlic here and there in the past, but didn’t pay it much mind. I didn’t know exactly what it was and didn’t have a reason to investigate it further. Then I came across this recipe for ricotta dumplings with green garlic and asparagus and I was all kinds of interested. Green garlic is a seasonal spring vegetable that looks similar to scallions and garlic scapes. It is basically baby garlic harvested before the bulb is fully formed, and now is the time to look for it at local markets and farmstands. I obtained mine through Full Hand Farm by way of Wildwood Market, and I couldn’t wait to try this recipe. I must say, the flavor is truly unique and incredibly delicious. There is so much good in this recipe, but the green garlic really is my favorite thing about it. This dish is the epitome of what I want in a springtime meal. It is light yet satisfying, bursting with fresh flavor and texture from the herbs and veggies, and it is simply lovely to look at. The vibrant green of the asparagus, green garlic and chives against the fluffy white of the dumplings makes me happy.
If you have not yet tried your hand at homemade ricotta, let this be the thing that motivates you to give it a shot. The original recipe does give instructions for how to make the dumplings using store bought ricotta so if you must go that route, follow the link at the bottom for that info. I honestly haven’t bought a single container of the store bought variety since learning to make my own because it doesn’t even begin to compare, and because homemade is so easy! I often make it in the morning before work while working on breakfast or kids’ lunches, and then have it ready to go for dinner that evening. These dumplings are so incredible and I am already inspired with ways to use them in other recipes. I am sure you’ll be seeing them here again in the future. In the meantime, go out and hunt down some green garlic and make this amazing spring meal.