by: Morgan Richter
Harvesting Spruce Tips
Spruce tips are packed with Vitamin C and are incredibly tasty, they have a bold and beautiful citrus flavour – we refer to them as our local lemons!
When you see a spruce tree that looks like a Christmas tree lit up, that’s when you know its spruce picking time! Generally, spruce tips are best harvested during spring (late May, early June) and the colour of the tip is the prettiest green you’ll ever see! Spruce tip season comes and goes, like many other foraging flurries, so be sure to act fast when you see those little green tips starting to burst!
Once you have figured out which are spruce trees, picking tips really is a no brainer - all you need are your fingers and a bucket! Pinch each of the tip with your fingers and the bud will fall off. Remember, only pick scattered tips and you want the tree to look like it did when you got there. If the tree is small and immature, leave it and move to the next. Once the tip has become stiff and a darker green, you know the season for spruce tipping is sadly over.
Like most of our vinegars, spruce tip vinegar is great for the base of a salad dressing – combine the vinegar with oil, a sweetener, like local honey or maple syrup, some tangy ginger and wait for the crowd to ask you ‘what made that salad so tasty!’
Spruce Infused Peanut Sauce
Yields 1 2/3 cup
- ¾ cup creamy peanut butter
- ¼ cup Spruce Tip Vinegar
- ¼ cup water
- 1/3 cup tamari or soy sauce (low sodium)
- 3 tbs honey or agave nectar
- 1 ½ teaspoons grated ginger or ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 to 2 medium cloves garlic, minced or pressed
- ¼ teaspoons red pepper flakes
Sprinkle with crushed peanuts