5

votes

How to eat seasonally

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created August 26, 2012 at 12:41 PM

I remember when certain foods were not available when out season. (I also remember when all the stores and gas stations were closed on Sunday!) With shipping that is no longer true.

How do I determine which vegetables and fruits are seasonal for my area? What would a eat in the dead of winter? Just meat and fat?

Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32556)

on August 26, 2012
at 10:37 PM

No omatic, but it is a good way to stretch the season for local food.

61f9349ad28e3c42d1cec58ba4825a7d

(10480)

on August 26, 2012
at 08:33 PM

I just meant as far as learning what is seasonal - if the market isn't open in winter, going there won't show you what is in season! But I do can and freeze as well. I think that foods that you canned or froze while they were in season in your locality does count as seasonal eating.

D74cb1bb57c581421865eee3901158f0

(45)

on August 26, 2012
at 07:45 PM

Would canning and freezing make it seasonal?

Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32556)

on August 26, 2012
at 07:09 PM

That's why folks learned how to can & freeze. :)

61f9349ad28e3c42d1cec58ba4825a7d

(10480)

on August 26, 2012
at 07:08 PM

Many local Farmer's Markets are only open half the year or so. :)

Medium avatar

(2923)

on August 26, 2012
at 05:15 PM

2 more resources to add to blueballoon's -- Eat the Seasons: UK http://www.eattheseasons.co.uk/ and US http://www.eattheseasons.com/ -- Whole9 Seasonal (PDF at end of article) http://whole9life.com/2010/12/five-reasons-to-go-seasonal/

D74cb1bb57c581421865eee3901158f0

(45)

on August 26, 2012
at 02:00 PM

I love that link !

E36cb992cf0a5eba8b97a359c15f38b3

(4347)

on August 26, 2012
at 01:04 PM

I would add that in general eggs aren't really in season (in any quantity to speak of) in the winter because the days are shorter. We don't eat many eggs in the winter because it's harder to find them from local farms then.

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6 Answers

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4
E36cb992cf0a5eba8b97a359c15f38b3

on August 26, 2012
at 01:01 PM

This is a good resource: http://www.epicurious.com/articlesguides/seasonalcooking/farmtotable/seasonalingredientmap It's not perfect, but you will get a little insight as to what's available in your area (assuming, of course, that you live in the US).

In winter we (meaning my family) eat a lot of fat, proportionally more meat than in the summer, and root veggies/storage crops. For us this means potatoes and sweet potatoes, onions, carrots, winter squash, parsnips, garlic, etc. Since we don't live too far north, we can also get things like kale well into cold weather. We don't eat a lot of fruit in the winter, though I do occasionally buy storage apples from the winter farmers market.

D74cb1bb57c581421865eee3901158f0

(45)

on August 26, 2012
at 02:00 PM

I love that link !

Medium avatar

(2923)

on August 26, 2012
at 05:15 PM

2 more resources to add to blueballoon's -- Eat the Seasons: UK http://www.eattheseasons.co.uk/ and US http://www.eattheseasons.com/ -- Whole9 Seasonal (PDF at end of article) http://whole9life.com/2010/12/five-reasons-to-go-seasonal/

E36cb992cf0a5eba8b97a359c15f38b3

(4347)

on August 26, 2012
at 01:04 PM

I would add that in general eggs aren't really in season (in any quantity to speak of) in the winter because the days are shorter. We don't eat many eggs in the winter because it's harder to find them from local farms then.

2
Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32556)

on August 26, 2012
at 03:41 PM

Shop only at your Farmers Market & you will learn what is seasonal in your locale.

D74cb1bb57c581421865eee3901158f0

(45)

on August 26, 2012
at 07:45 PM

Would canning and freezing make it seasonal?

61f9349ad28e3c42d1cec58ba4825a7d

(10480)

on August 26, 2012
at 08:33 PM

I just meant as far as learning what is seasonal - if the market isn't open in winter, going there won't show you what is in season! But I do can and freeze as well. I think that foods that you canned or froze while they were in season in your locality does count as seasonal eating.

Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32556)

on August 26, 2012
at 10:37 PM

No omatic, but it is a good way to stretch the season for local food.

61f9349ad28e3c42d1cec58ba4825a7d

(10480)

on August 26, 2012
at 07:08 PM

Many local Farmer's Markets are only open half the year or so. :)

Ce41c230e8c2a4295db31aec3ef4b2ab

(32556)

on August 26, 2012
at 07:09 PM

That's why folks learned how to can & freeze. :)

1
F9638b939a6f85d67f60065677193cad

(4266)

on August 26, 2012
at 09:24 PM

Eat local. That's the best way. Sometimes farmer's markets, at least in my area, bring in produce from locations with drastically different climates than my own, such as the desert. Still, it's fairly close to seasonal. If you only have farmer's markets for half the year, then you either have to preserve some food for the winter or you have to go without.

0
71a9314d92454a6c8339239b45ce1d72

on November 29, 2012
at 08:10 PM

More seasonal items: Apples, dates, nuts. For your winter pot: Before modern storage technologies, food was put into root cellars, dried, immersed in honey or oil, and fermented in various ways, such as sauerkraut and even some meats. In the middle ages, monasteries grew a lot of leeks, some for root and some for cutting the tops. They generally also grew a bed of "coleworts" which is usually interpreted as mixed brassicas (members of the cabbage family, including kale, collards,etc.) There are illustrations of tall kales where the lower leaves are progressively harvested and the plant keeps growing up at the top. Under these, a groundcover of mixed edible low growing plants like chickweed, dandelion, purslane, plantain, etc. These are regarded as weeds nowadays, but originally were brought to the new world as useful plants for salads and potherbs throughout the growing season. Spring: People also grew perennial greens for early emergence-- good king henry, lovage and rapunzel (rampion), as well as shoots such as asparagus, hops, etc.

0
32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41757)

on August 26, 2012
at 10:09 PM

Seasonal eating does not necessarily mean anything good. I can buy seasonal stuff from my grocery store and it was still probably shipped halfway around the world. Farmers markets will be a better bet for getting truly seasonal food. What you can grow yourself is even better.

  • Early growing season (spring to early summer) - greens
  • Mid-growing season (early summer to early fall) - fruits and fruiting vegetables
  • Late-growing season to off-season (fall & winter) - roots, tubers, shelf-stable vegetables (squash, cabbage, etc...)

0
45ace03a0eff1219943d746cfb1c4197

(3661)

on August 26, 2012
at 02:10 PM

A lot of that depends on where you live. Seasonal is relative, as are seasons. Through books, magazines, friends, garden shops, catalogs, and the internet, you can find information about what grows in your area or nearby. I can pick citrus fruit in my backyard most of the year. That is certainly not true in most climates.

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