Looking for a way to elevate your run-of-the-mill recipes to restaurant-level quality? Grab some microgreens. These flavorful specialty plants are often priced high at gourmet grocers and health food stores, but by buying them straight from the source at the farmers' market, you'll save money and get the fresher products. They may even be available loose in bins, so you can bring your own reusable container to take them home in.
In essence, microgreens are small versions of your favorite greens, harvested as seedlings. They come in a seemingly endless list of varieties; from basil to cilantro, lettuce to celery, if you can think of a green, chances are that it exists in "micro" form.
How to choose them
Microgreens should look vibrant and taught. Limp leaves and stems indicate that the plants have passed their prime.
Generally, microgreens have a flavor profile reminiscent of their larger counterparts. Arugula microgreens, for example, taste similar to arugula. Thus, choose your variety accordingly.
How to use them
Microgreens are flavorful, delicate and beautiful to look at, which makes them ideal for a variety of dishes. Dress some microgreens with light vinaigrette for a simple, refreshing salad. Add them to a sandwich for a crisp punch of flavor. Use a few leaves and stems as a garnish for everything from pasta to steak.
How to store them
Wrap your leftover microgreens in a slightly damp paper towel and store the whole package in an unsealed plastic bag in the crisper drawer. They'll last for about a week.