It’s hosta shoot season, and marinated hosta shoots make a great spring appetizer or side dish to help you enjoy your edimentals (edible ornamentals).
Here’s the jist: go get the plumpest, fattest hosta shoots you can find, get a pan or grill really, really hot, char them on one side only, add a splash of soy, then remove them to a dish, drizzle over a tasty oil-based marinade of garlic, ginger, chili and your favorite oil and let it sit for at least thirty minutes.
As the mixture sits, you spoon the juice that forms over the hostas here and there, napping them with the juices. Just before serving you add some lemon juice to taste, move the hostas to a plate, spoon the goodness on top, sprinkle with a few crushed nuts and herbs, and eat.
Sounds pretty good, right? You can switch up the herbs however you like, or skip them, but keep the dressing as is, at least the first time you make it.
Marinated Hosta Shoots
- 8 oz hosta shoots
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce or equivalent
- 1 tablespoon or more toasted nuts or seeds of your choice
- Pinch of hot chili
- 2 tablespoons cooking oil for searing
- Fresh lemon juice to taste
- 2 tablespoons flavorful nut oil like toasted sesame, acorn, walnut, etc
- 1 teaspoon maple syrup or equivalent
- 1 small clove garlic grated
- A few gratings of fresh ginger
- Fresh herbs like cilantro Italian parsley, mint, chives, tarragon, or a combination, coarsely chopped
- Combine the maple, garlic, ginger and chili.
- Sear the hosta shoots on the highest heat until deeply browned on one side, add the soy, toss for a second or two to evaporate it and coat the hostas, then remove to a shallow dish like a pie plate to cool.
- The shoots should still be a bit crunchy. Try your best to undercook them.
- Drizzle the shoots with the oil mixture and and allow to sit for at least 30 minutes up to an hour, gently spooning the dressing that forms over them occasionally.
- To serve the shoots, lay the shoots out on a plate with the tops facing in the same direction.
- Season the juice left in the bowl with a dash of lemon juice to taste, then spoon over the shoots. Garnish with the nuts and other herbs if using and serve.