Fiddleheads are the tightly wound immature fronds of the ostrich fern, the first part of the plant to emerge early in the spring. The ostrich fern grows in riparian habitats, favoring riverbanks and sandbars.
Though there are many types of fern, the fiddlehead of the ostrich fern is one of only a few that are recommended edibles. The ostrich fern can be identified by a deep groove in it's stem, dark green color, a brown papery covering as it emerges, and the previous year's fertile fronds which resemble ostrich feathers.
Wash well and lightly steam or sautee - fiddleheads add a fresh, green flavor to any spring dish. A great addition to omelets and frittatas.
Latin Name: Matteuccia struthiopteris
Season: Late April-Mid May