- Sort fiddleheads, discarding any that have unrolled.
- Place in a plastic bag and shake vigorously to remove brown husk covering them.
- Rinse fiddleheads thoroughly in lots of water. Trim off any brown tips with a knife. In a large saucepan of boiling water, cook fiddleheads for 15 minutes, or until tender.
- Drain and reserve. Heat oil and butter in a skillet over medium-high heat; add garlic and hot pepper. Cook for 1 minute.
- Add fiddleheads and continue cooking for 2 minutes, stirring to coat well with butter mixture.
- Add lemon zest. Season with salt and pepper to taste and stir. Serve as a side dish for grilled meat.
: Replace oil and butter by toasted sesame oil, and replace hot pepper by gingerroot. Omit lemon zest and sprinkle with fresh coriander instead.