As the weather changes around the world so does the fresh produce that is available. Each season offers an array of beautiful fresh produce, this is a great time to try new recipes or modify those old ones to incorporate more seasonal fruits and vegetables. Not only will your taste buds thank you but there are health benefits too. Here are the many benefits to eating seasonally!
BETTER FOR YOU
They are fresher and contain more vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber that will help maintain a healthier you. Compared to items that are grown in unnatural conditions or travel miles to get to your grocery store, in-season foods are always at their nutritional peak. In winter we are provided by nature all things citrus, these are particularly high in Vitamin C which is very important for preventing infections such as colds and flu. Winter vegetables offer comfort and are perfect for hot meals, healthy stews, soups, casseroles and other warming meals.
Eating seasonally reduces the demand for out of season produce which further supports more local produce and supports local farming in your area which means less transportation, less refrigeration, fewer hothouses, and less irradiation of produce.
MORE COST EFFECTIVE
Local and seasonal food is always cheaper than food that is grown in hothouses and needs to travel hundreds of miles to get to your grocery stand. The difference in price for in-season and out-of-season fruits and vegetables can be pretty dramatic. Usually, the price is about double for items that are not currently being harvested.
SUPPORT LOCAL INDUSTRY
Support the local farmers and the local industry. Local farmers must compete with big industry giants even though the quality of their product is much better so the support of the consumer is needed. Do your part and support sustainability within your community.
CHINESE MEDICINE ADVICE FOR SEASONAL EATING
Cooling foods and warming foods naturally grow in a cycle to compensate for what the temperature does to our yin and yang balance. Some foods have a COOLING energy (raw vegetables like lettuce, for example, mango, avocado) and some foods have a WARMING energy (cooked sweet potatoes, soup, onions, dates, etc). Eating fresh raw foods in the summer makes sense when it is hot out and stews, soups, and casseroles in the winter when it is cold.
IN SEASON NOW
artichoke, beets, beet greens, bell peppers, carrots, cauliflower, corn, potatoes, radishes, sweet potatoes, wild mushrooms, eggplant, garlic, winter squash, Brussel sprouts, chard, pumpkin
almonds, apples, chestnuts, cranberries, limes, melon, pears, plums, pomegranate, raspberries, tomatoes
When you are entertaining you can create a beautiful table using seasonal foods. Opt for colors and flavors to compliment the season. Strolling through the farmers market is always fun however if you do not have time and live in California, Farm Fresh To You will deliver a farm box to your front door. You can schedule your delivery every week or every other week, choose the farm box size based on your family, and customize your delivery each week by email. Click HERE for $15 off your first farm box. This is a great way to support your local farmer, get in season fresh food and try new fruits and vegetables.
In the coming weeks look for many delicious seasonal fall recipes on Honeysuckle and for even more options check out one of my favorite food blogs seasonsandsuppers.ca for some great seasonal recipes.