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A Spring Veggie-Lover’s Dinner

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You don't have to be a vegetarian to love this meatless meal loaded with baby vegetables, spring herbs, and wild mushrooms.

To serve eight with this menu, you'll need to double the pasta dish. The shopping list already reflects the scaled-up amounts.

You don’t have to be a vegetarian to love this meatless meal. It’s brimming with all those beautifully tender and sweet roots and shoots that make their appearance in the early spring, perfect for celebrating Easter or just the return of your local farmer’s market. Start with a creamy ragout of mixed wild mushrooms on baguette toasts, then tuck into fresh pasta ribbons mingled with asparagus, baby carrots, peas—whatever’s best at the market—in a brothy, buttery sauce. Wrap things up with a buttery hazelnut torte filled with a cloud of creamy strawberry filling.

Menu Timeline

1 day ahead

  • Make and bake the crust for the strawberry torte.
  • Make the filling for the strawberry torte. Refrigerate, covered, overnight.
  • Shell and blanch the fresh peas or fava beans. Refrigerate in a covered container.
  • Make the vinaigrette for the salad and refrigerate, covered.

3 hours ahead

  • Make the topping for the mushroom toasts, but hold back about half of the crème fraîche. Cool and refrigerate.
  • Cook the artichokes and eggs for the salad and let cool. Cut both into wedges.

1 hour ahead

  • Wash, dry, and hull the strawberries for garnishing the torte, and if they’re large, quarter them.
  • Trim and cut the vegetables for the ragout.
  • Cut the pasta sheets into strips.

30 minutes ahead

  • Toast the baguette slices and reheat the mushroom topping with the rest of the crème fraîche.
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil for the pasta.
  • Tear the lettuce into bite-size pieces and assemble the salad.

As guests arrive

  • Serve the mushroom toasts.
  • Make the vegetable ragout and cook the pasta.
  • Toss the salad with the dressing.

Just before dessert:

  • Spoon the strawberry torte filling into the crust and garnish with small or quartered strawberries.

Shopping List

Fresh Produce

  • 6 cups mixed spring vegetables, such as medium-thick asparagus, baby carrots, baby turnips, spring onions, and sugar snap peas
  • 1 lb. mixed wild mushrooms, such as chanterelles, maitakes, hedgehogs, or morels
  • 1 pint strawberries, plus extra for garnish
  • 4 large whole artichokes
  • 1 lb. fresh peas in the pod or 1-1/2 lb. fresh fava beans in the pod
  • 2 heads butter lettuce, such as Bibb or Boston (about 6 oz. each)
  • 2/3 cup loosely packed pea shoots or watercress sprigs; more for garnish
  • 1 large and 2 medium shallots
  • 1 bulb garlic
  • 2 large lemons
  • 1 bunch fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 bunch fresh thyme
  • 1 bunch fresh tarragon
  • 1 bunch additional spring herbs, such as chervil or mint

Meat, Eggs & Dairy

  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup well-chilled heavy cream
  • 11 oz. unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup crème fraîche (about 4 oz.)
  • 1/2 cup mascarpone
  • 1 oz. Parmigiano-Reggiano

Other Groceries

  • 1 fresh baguette
  • 1-1/2 lb. fresh pasta sheets
  • 4 oz. (about 3/4 cup) whole hazelnuts (unskinned)

Pantry Staples

  • 4-1/2 oz. (1 cup) all-purpose flour
  • 1-1/4 cup sugar
  • 6-1/2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil, more as needed
  • 1 Tbs. Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • Kosher salt
  • black peppercorns

The Menu


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