Fiddleheads, a special type of fern frond that resembles the head of a violin, are easily found in the Northwestern U.S. in springtime and are often pickled.
The fronds hold their shape surprisingly well during cooking. These have been lightly steamed and drained. They want only a dollop of butter and a little salt and pepper, and then are fit for even a king’s table!
Photo courtesy www.RareSeeds.com
To be safe, accompany an expert local fiddlehead hunter your first time out--he or she can show you the ropes, saving you a potentially dangerous error. My guide, Mike Brooker, shows me what to looks for when hunting the Maine variety--moist, partly shady terrain. The beaver-chewed tree is a nearly fool-proof sign that fiddleheads are to be found here.