Fiddlin’ Time


Springtime, I can finally hear the peepers and know that at last, spring things are on the way! And fiddleheads, those delightfully shy and delicate fern fronds, will soon be making their limited run in the theatre of spring crops.

Emerging from the marshy lowlands,
Brief appearances by curly fronds
And hungrily awaiting your arrival
The appreciative gourmand responds

Come here, you tasty little fern
So antioxidant wealthy
Rich in omega three fatty acids
Low sodium, high fiber, so healthy

Let me wash you carefully, trim your stalk
As harmful micro-things may lurk
But your subtle taste and tender bite
Make you worth the work

You must be cooked completely, for safety
And we have a multitude of ways
To enhance your delicate flavour as well
As to help you extend your stay

The pot is bubbling atop the stove
Your hot water bath awaits
I plunge you in and whisk you out
Toss with butter, and ladle on plates

Olive oil heats in saute pan,
In it, I turn fiddleheads loose
And as the ferns cook, sizzling,
I add pepper, and lemon juice

On into the month, as their numbers dwindle
I covetously horde all I find
And out comes the canner, and mason jars
As they’re packed into pickling brine

Delightfully dainty fickle fern
A part of forest lore
You know just how to hook us all
By leaving us wanting more


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