Farm-Fresh Flavors For Spring

This crowd-pleasing main dish and salad celebrate the best of what’s in season.

By Scott Jones | Photos By Jennifer Davick

Grilled Herb-Lemon Chicken Thighs With Cucumber-Yogurt Dipping Sauce

Grilled Herb-Lemon Chicken Thighs With Cucumber-Yogurt Dipping Sauce

Grilled Herb-Lemon Chicken Thighs With Cucumber-Yogurt Dipping Sauce

2 Tablespoons dried thyme
2 Tablespoons dried oregano
2 Tablespoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons onion powder
1 teaspoon pepper
1½ teaspoons salt, divided
12 bone-in chicken thighs, skin removed
1 lemon, halved
1 cup cucumber, peeled, seeded and shredded
1 cup plain, low-fat Greek yogurt
1½ Tablespoons lemon juice
2 Tablespoons chopped, fresh dill
2 garlic cloves, minced

Combine first 5 ingredients and 1 teaspoon of salt; stir until blended. Rinse chicken and pat dry. Rub lemon halves on all sides of chicken thighs, squeezing lemon juice from lemon. Rub seasoning mixture over chicken. Place chicken in a zip-top plastic freezer bag. Seal and chill 2 hours.

Meanwhile, combine cucumber, yogurt, lemon juice, dill, garlic and remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, stirring well. Chill until ready to serve.

Preheat grill to 350˚ to 400˚F (medium-high) heat. Remove chicken from bag, discarding bag. Grill chicken, covered with grill lid, 8 to 10 minutes on each side or until a meat thermometer inserted into thickest portion registers 180˚F.

Serve with Cucumber-Yogurt Dipping Sauce.

Prep: 15 minutes Chill: 2 hours Grill: 20 minutes Yield: 6 servings

Roasted Asparagus–New Potato Salad

1 pound fresh asparagus
1 pound small red potatoes, quartered
3 garlic cloves
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons Italian seasoning blend
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon pepper
½ cup bottled olive oil and vinegar dressing
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
Fresh arugula or mixed salad greens
1/3 cup crumbled farmer’s cheese or feta cheese
Garnish: lemon slices

Preheat oven to 400°F. Snap off and discard tough ends of asparagus. Cut into 1/2-inch pieces.

Combine asparagus, red potatoes, garlic, olive oil, Italian seasoning blend, salt and pepper in a large bowl; toss to coat.  Place in a single layer in a lightly greased 15- x 10-inch jelly-roll pan.

Bake at 400° for 40 to 45 minutes or until potatoes are browned and tender.

Meanwhile, whisk together dressing and next 3 ingredients. Place cooked vegetables in a large bowl, and drizzle with desired amount of dressing; toss gently to coat. Serve at room temperature or chilled over arugula with any remaining dressing. Sprinkle with cheese. Garnish, if desired.

Prep: 15 minutes Cook: 45 minutes Yield: 6 servings

Vanilla-Buttermilk Panna Cotta with Strawberry Sauce

Vanilla-Buttermilk Panna Cotta with Strawberry Sauce

BONUS: Vanilla-Buttermilk Panna Cotta with Strawberry Sauce

2 cups heavy cream
½ vanilla bean, split
1 envelope unflavored gelatin
½ cup, plus 2 Tablespoons sugar
2 ½ cups buttermilk
1 (16-oz.) container fresh strawberries, hulled
½ teaspoon lime zest
1 Tablespoon fresh lime juice
2½ Tablespoons honey
Garnish: mint sprig

Combine cream and vanilla bean in a small saucepan; sprinkle gelatin over cream, and let stand 10 minutes.

Cook cream mixture over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, 5 minutes or until gelatin is dissolved. Increase heat to medium; add sugar, and stir until sugar is dissolved (about 2 to 3 minutes).

Remove from heat. Scrape seeds from vanilla bean into cream mixture with back of a knife; discard vanilla bean. Whisk in buttermilk.  Let mixture cool to room temperature.

Divide mixture among 8 (10-oz.) glasses. Cover and chill 6 hours to 2 days.

Set aside 3 strawberries.  Process remaining strawberries with lime zest, lime juice and honey in a blender or food processor 1 minute or until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides as needed. Dice reserved strawberries; stir into processed strawberry mixture.

Spoon Strawberry Sauce into each glass just before serving. Garnish, if desired.

Prep: 15 minutes Chill: 6 hours Yield: 8 servings