30 Recipes to Make in April

Grapefruit Spritz

We’re bidding farewell to winter and embracing spring in this rosy cocktail, combining the last of winter’s citrus with seasonal raspberries. Tart and bitter notes from the grapefruit juice and Campari are balanced by floral crème de framboise and raspberries. It’s a cocktail worthy of your Easter buffet, and a refreshing change from too-sweet lemonade or mimosas.

The Bumble

Bartender Sam Johnson is playful (and literal) with this cocktail, using the Spanish term “manzanilla,” meaning chamomile, with manzanilla sherry. He brews the tea and creates a concentrated syrup, then adds the syrup to the shaker with sherry, gin, and an egg white for a refreshing, frothy cocktail.

Brock Eggs

At The Pig Brockenhurst in England, chef James Golding plays on classic Scotch eggs with his Brock Eggs, made by encasing little quail eggs in a tasty ham mixture, then deep-frying them.

Scrambled Eggs Florentine

Eggs may be a must at Easter brunch, but they easily can be stepped up from your basic scramble or omelet. Here, we fold spinach and mascarpone into soft scrambled eggs and spoon over crostini for an easy appetizer that fits right in with the other holiday-special dishes on the table.

Oven-Fried Baby Artichokes

Chef Hillary Sterling shared her recipe for oven-fried artichokes which deliver all of the crispness of deep-fried with a fraction of the mess.

Spicy Tuna Sushi “Biscotti”

These spicy tuna biscotti from chef Kiminobu Saito make great hors d’oeuvres.

Crostini with Ricotta, Honey, and Fava Beans

This simple, spring-forward appetizer is all about the stellar ingredients in California’s Napa region. Chef Sarah Heller of Radish Leaf Cuisine tops sourdough crostini with sheep’s milk ricotta from Bellwether Farms in nearby Sonoma, along with fresh favas and a drizzle of wildflower honey. You can use fresh cow’s milk ricotta if sheep’s milk is not available.

Fried Zucchini Blossoms with Prosciutto and Mozzarella

Zucchini blossoms can be ordered online, and are seasonally available at farmer’s markets.

Whitefish Rillettes

We take traditional rillettes out of the charcuterie category by using smoked white fish instead of pork. Faintly sweet sautéed fennel complements the delicate flavor of the fish, while tangy crème fraîche and mascarpone cheese make the spread rich and silky. It’s delicious at room temperature, making it perfect for Easter brunch.

Chile Oil

Drizzle leftover chile oil over salad or pasta for an extra kick of flavor.

Beet and Pistachio Yogurt

Using both pistachio oil and roasted pistachios creates a rich, nutty flavor that pairs well with roasted beets. Serve leftover yogurt with crispy chicken thighs or roasted sweet potatoes.

Spring Asparagus Salad with Feta

This lovely salad combines both fresh and blanched asparagus with peas, pea shoots and edamame in a creamy, bright, lemony dressing.

Fennel and Arugula Salad with Meyer Lemon Vinaigrette

Meyer lemon has a tartness that’s more tamed than lemon, which is why we love it with peppery arugula and crisp shaved fennel in this simple salad. Soaking the shaved fennel in ice water helps the thin slices retain their crisp.

Wild Rice and Golden Beet Salad

Carissa Mondavi steams the golden beets gently to preserve their color and toothsomeness before tossing with nutty wild rice. Roasted leeks, walnuts, and a chive-and-Champagne vinaigrette complete this simple spring salad.

Roasted Asparagus and Mushrooms

Roasted asparagus and hen-of-the-woods mushrooms go with any Easter dish, from glazed ham to a spring quiche. The vegetables roast first in olive oil then finish in butter for an extra dimension of flavor and a nice sheen.

Carrot Farinata

This cross between traditional stewed carrot tzimmes and Italian chickpea flour pancakes personifies the beautiful blending of cultures that’s at the heart of the Seder dinners hosted by Hillary Sterling at her restaurant, Vic’s, in New York City.

Confit Kugel Wedges

A drizzle of vincotto, made from simmered grape must that’s aged in oak barrels, punctuates the rich kugel with its sweet and tangy bite. If you like, do as Sterling does, and serve them with Saffron-Soaked Golden Raisins and Vic’s Chicken Liver Mousse or our Kosher Chicken Liver Mousse.

Sautéed Chicories with Chile Oil

Chicories like escarole, frisee, endive and radicchio can be bitter, but balanced with chile oil, salt, white wine vinegar and garlic, they become a satisfying side dish for an early spring dinner.

Drunken Chicken Soup

Inspired by Chinese drunken chicken, Justin Chapple’s drunken chicken soup is packed with an entire bottle of Shaoxing wine.

Chilled English Pea Soup with Crab and Meyer Lemon

This refreshing, verdant English pea and watercress soup is the perfect base for a zesty crab salad. Chef Sarah Heller of Napa’s Radish Leaf Cuisine folds sweet Dungeness crab with Meyer lemon, crème fraîche, and a host of delicate spring herbs before mounding atop each serving of the soup. Any lump crabmeat or cooked, chilled shrimp would also work.

Brisket Meatballs

At Vic’s, Sterling does a special Italian-influenced Passover menu that includes this riff on the requisite brisket, which appears as brisket meatballs.“Everyone makes brisket [for Passover], and the Italians make polpette, so why not bring them together?” says Sterling.

Saba-and-Dijon-Glazed Easter Ham

We’re switching up the traditional sugar-crusted holiday ham by using saba, a sweet and slightly acidic syrup made from cooked-down grape must (similar to aged balsamic). We bake the ham on a bed of carrots and shallots so the drippings flavor the vegetables in the oven.

Baked Cod Fillet with Bouillabaisse Sauce and Green Olive Tapenade

For a special dinner party, the highlight of this dish—the deeply rich, slightly spicy bouillabaisse sauce—is perfect to make ahead.

Braised Lamb with Garlic, Wine, and Lovage

This simple braise yields fork-tender lamb in just 2 hours. Lovage, a perennial herb that smells and tastes similar to celery, is sometimes available at specialty grocery stores or farmers markets; celery leaves make a fine substitute.

Scallops with Charred Scallions and Marcona Romesco

Marcona almonds make a rich, nutty and unconventional romesco sauce for these cast-iron-skillet scallops. Serve them with a citrusy Sauvignon Blanc.

Pasta Primavera

This spring pasta is buttery and rich but still feels light from the lemon zest and fresh herbs.

Garganelli with Speck, Peas, and Scallion Cream

Sweet spring peas and garlicky sauce flood the tubular garganelli pasta, making each bite a surprise. Substitute penne if you can’t find garganelli, and don’t skip the lemon and mint at the end, which bring balance to the dish.

Orange Torta

Almond flour keeps these dairy-free, gluten-free cakes from chef Hillary Sterling extra moist and flavorful, while the inclusion of lemon and orange juice, plus leftover pieces from Sterling’s Orange Mostarda gives the desserts a delicious citrusy scent.

Pear Crostata

Firm pears are the key to this impressive dessert; look for a thin layer of green under the skin as you peel them.

Olive Oil Cake with Honey-Yogurt Cream and Strawberries

This is no featherweight spring cake: Olive oil and almond flour keep it dense and moist so it can hold plenty of juicy macerated strawberries. An infusion of lime in the cake batter and a tangy yogurt whipped cream brightens each slice.

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