With their top 20 spring recipes, bbcgoodfood gives us delicious dishes for a brighter day. A light take on many meals, including pastas, casseroles and even a quiche, can be found on the list and many of these recipes include mint and/or asparagus and/or spring onions.

A pea, mint and spring onion soup is paired with a parmesan tuile for a very flavorful light spring soup. It’s an easy recipe that take only 45 minutes. The article also features several desserts, including a rhubarb spice cake. The rhubarb makes this cake wonderfully moist and the hint of ginger brings back memories my gingerbread cookies at Christmas time. I suggest you read the comments to this recipe, as some people found it to be too runny, so they reduced the water.

But out of all the recipes I looked at, my favorite was this olive loaf with asparagus.

Asparagus, Sun Dried Tomato and Olive Loaf

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup olive oil, plus extra for greasing
  • 1 ¼ cup asparagus spears, each cut into 3 pieces
  • 1/2 cup self-raising flour
  • 1 tablespoon thyme leaves
  • 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • handful pitted black olives
  • 1/2 cup sundried tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup Gruyère or Beaufort, grated

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Oil and line the base of a loaf tin (approximately 8×5 pan) with baking paper.
  3. Cook the asparagus in boiling, salted water for 2 minutes. Drain, then cool quickly under cold running water. Pat dry.
  4. Mix the flour and thyme with seasoning in a large bowl. Make a well in the center, then add the eggs, milk and oil, stirring all the time to draw the flour into the center. Beat for 1 min to make a smooth batter.
  5. Reserve 5 asparagus tips and a few olives. Add the remaining asparagus, tomatoes, olives and two-thirds of the cheese to the batter.
  6. Pour into the tin, then put the reserved asparagus and olives on top. Sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Bake for 35-40 minutes until the cake feels firm to the touch and is golden and crusty on top. Cool in the tin for 5 minutes, then turn out and cool on a wire rack.

This will make a nice complement to a grilled chicken or fish dish. Mix up a little garlic or other spice butter to serve with the bread.