Summer is rapidly approaching, and as we transition from spring, there are even more delicious kinds of fruit and veg enjoying their moment of glory. We love eating fresh local produce, and not just because it’s better for the environment than food that’s travelled half way around the world to get to us, but because it tastes better! If you’re in need of some inspiration for your May meal plans, here are all the ideas you need for making the most of what’s good to eat this month.
Fruit and veg to enjoy in May
As the trusty Vegetarian Society guide says, here are the fruit and veg at their best in May:
Artichoke, Asparagus, Aubergine, Beetroot, Chicory, Chillies, Elderflowers, Lettuce, Marrow, New Potatoes, Peas, Peppers, Radishes, Rhubarb, Rocket, Samphire, Sorrel, Spinach, Spring Greens, Spring Onions, Strawberries, Sweetheart Cabbage, Watercress
As always, we’re sharing some ideas for using some of our favourite ingredients from this list below, but don’t forget to look back at our previous monthly guides for even more inspiration for this month:
- What’s good to eat in February for ideas on using cabbages
- What’s good to eat in March for beetroot, rhubarb and spring onions
- What’s good to eat in April for new potatoes, radishes, rocket and spinach
The all-too-fleeting asparagus season is definitely one to enjoy in May. There are so many ways to serve up the delicious spring treat of asparagus spears: boil them, steam them, roast them in oil and balsamic vinegar and sprinkle them with parmesan… Or chop them up and use them in our spring vegetable risotto or minestrone verde soup – both of these are also great for using up any other leftover veg you have in the fridge.
Another versatile vegetable that’s fresh this month is aubergine, which you can slice up to make our lentil, aubergine and tomato moussaka or dice up to enjoy bruschetta-style on our garlic veggies on toast. It’s also perfect for cubing and adding to curries and stews, as well as roasting whole with a stuffing recipe of your choice. You could even pop it on the barbecue if we get a warm day!
Elderflowers typically bloom towards the end of this month, and foraging them is an enjoyable activity for a sunny day. Elderflower is most famously used to make refreshing cordial. This syrupy mixture isn’t just lovely for drinking – you can also stir it into numerous other sweet treats, such as cakes, trifles and jams.
As super-sized courgettes (they’re just left to grow on the plant for longer), marrows can be used in any recipe that needs courgettes, from ratatouilles to courgette cake. Not only that, but they’re tasty when stuffed and served whole. Look no further than our stuffed marrow with beef mince for the perfect recipe for using up leftover bolognese or chilli con carne – you can of course use vegetarian versions just as easily!
There are few dishes that can’t be improved with the addition of the humble pea – and there’s a lot more to them than serving them as a side for favourite dishes from roast dinners to quiche. Add them to pies, such as our stew chicken pie, cottage or shepherd’s pie or fish pie; soups, such as this pea and mint soup or delicious summer minestrone soup; risottos, such as our Italian sausage, pea and parsley risotto; and pasta dishes, curries, chowders and, well, pretty much anything else that you can think of. They’ll bring extra flavour, texture and nutrition to any dish, so make the most of them while they’re at their best!
Take a look at our recipe bank for even more May meal plan inspiration, and don’t forget to come back next month to find out what’s good to eat in June!