The plums have finally arrived at the farmers market (and we highly recommend the batch from Visalia for they are the juiciest and most flavorful), which means that spring will soon be coming to an end, and with it the produce that the season of rebirth represents. It may be too late to catch the candied kumquats, but there's still some time to enjoy other spring fare like strawberries (unripe and green as well as peak seasonal red), lemon verbena, and cherries. Here are a few favorites to indulge in before the summer fruits take over:
Bomboloni from Perbacco
Perbacco's pastry chef Laura Cronin, also known for bringing the popular soft serve to Zero Zero, is fond of the strong maple scent that comes from candy cap mushrooms. The foraged mushrooms, which are picked in the winter, are combined with a maple-flavored sugar to coat the soft Italian doughnut holes filled with green strawberry compote. Served alongside is a tangy Meyer lemon curd and dainty slices of vanilla-poached rhubarb and unripe strawberries.
Cannoli at AQ
AQ's dessert using green strawberries was recently replaced with a mid-spring poppy seed cannoli with mascarpone crema, poppy seed pudding, chamomile, and bright red strawberries, which pastry chef Maya Erickson said have reached their peak this time of spring.
Verrine at Craftsman and Wolves
The petite glass jars at Craftsman and Wolves change on the regular in accordance to what's in season. Chef William Werner's latest springtime verrine consists of a layer of lime foam, rich buttermilk creme, and sweet hibiscus-soaked cherries, all topped with a cocoa nib crumble.
Chocolate & Cherries at Absinthe
At Absinthe, Chef Bill Corbett's loose take on a Black Forest cake involves poaching seasonal cherries in port wine, paired with a rich chocolate cake with whipped chocolate ganache and a lightly sweetened yogurt sauce.
Pudding Cake from SPQR
Chef Matthew Accarrini's focus here is pistachio and cherries. The pudding cake, made from pistachios, comes roasted with a rosemary-infused gelato, cherries poached in Brachetto wine with vanilla, and finished with a rosemary hydrosol. Accarrini says the bing cherries will be gone in a few weeks, so go cherry crazy while you can.