Tasty Tuesday: A May Day Feast

30 Apr

Recipe and Content courtesy of Pat Crocker for http://www.motherearthliving.com

I’ll be glad to see the backside of April and its cold temperatures, snowfalls and chilly rains. May is one of my favorite months of the year (the other being September), and in honor of my Scottish ancestry, I’m featuring a May Day Feast derived from the traditions of the Ancient Celts, who ate and drank heartily during their traditional fire festival on the eve of May Day, which celebrated the return of the light half of the year.

From the fulachta fiaolha (cooking pits of the Celtic tribes), this feast features organic flavors of the wild, with foods gathered from the seas, the forests, and the meadows.

Beltaine (pronounced Bee-YAWL-tinnuh), is one of two pagan fire festivals in the Celtic year. Held on the eve of May Day, April 30, it marks the beginning of summer and the light half of the Celtic calendar, and it celebrates the return of life and fertility.

A May Day Feast

WARM WILD MUSHROOMS WITH BAKED GOAT CHEESE

Serves 4

The Celts mined salt in Hallstatt (in modern Austria) and are thought to have helped introduce butter churning to modern Europe. They made cheese, especially goat cheese, and preserved it with salt.

12 ounces chanterelle, cap, shiitake,
or oyster mushrooms
1 large garlic clove, chopped
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
2 ounces soft goat cheese, cut into 4 rounds
2 cups mesclun or spinach
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon
2 tablespoons chopped fresh marjoram
1/2 cup fresh nasturtium flowers (optional)
2 tablespoons white wine, tarragon, or white vinegar

Clean mushrooms and slice. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in skillet and cook garlic, mushrooms, and chives over medium heat until just tender. Season with salt and pepper. Lift mushrooms out of pan with slotted spoon onto lightly oiled baking sheet, dividing into 4 portions. Place goat cheese round in center of each pile. Bake at 400°F about 4 minutes, until cheese melts and browns slightly.

Meanwhile, wash and dry lettuce and herbs. Toss together with flowers in medium bowl. Divide into 4 portions and place on warmed plates. Add remaining oil to skillet, turn heat to medium, and stir to collect pan juices and bits. Add vinegar and simmer until reduced slightly.

Spoon hot mushrooms, juices, and cheese over lettuce, then drizzle with hot oil and vinegar. Serve immediately.

Drop by fellow Tasty Tuesday Author Selena Robins Musings for a delicious Baked Strawberry Cheesecake recipe! 

 

2 Responses to “Tasty Tuesday: A May Day Feast”

  1. kathleenkaskawrites April 30, 2013 at 10:59 am #

    Okay, forget the brussel sprouts for dinner tonight. I’m making this! It sounds so wonderful. Thanks for sharing.

    • nancyelauzon April 30, 2013 at 8:31 pm #

      I know, it sounds very tasty, doesn’t it?

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