When you eat food, you are not just filling your belly with delicious fuel. These days eating(my favourite past-time) is full of complications.
It is not just what you eat that is important but where it came from, who produced it and what impact it has on the environment. It can be a little overwhelming. While being aware of where our food comes from is a huge step towards becoming a mindful-eater and taking charge of our health – there must be a simpler way.
I believe that a great rule of thumb is to eat with the season. That is, eating foods which are fresh and in season and staying away from. That doesn't mean we cannot enjoy other foods – but being more aware can't hurt.
Fresher & Tastier
Eating foods in season means that we have the freshest foods available. These have not been sitting in a freezer or refrigerator for weeks, or months in some cases, which means that the structural components of the fruits or vegetable have not been compromised. As your food has been recently harvested and not kept in storage for a long time, the fruit or vege will taste just as it should. Say goodbye to impossibly hard pears, rubbery tomatoes and watery strawberries.
Another benefit of shorter storage periods before purchasing seasonal foods is the fruits and vegetables last so much longer. I have a cauliflower in my fridge that I bought from a local farmers market two weeks ago that still looks, smells and tastes amazing.
Eating seasonal foods also means that you are more likely to shop locally. This benefits your local community and helps to encourage a more sustainable food system by supporting your local a producers.
I used to get stuck in a recipe rut, where I pretty much just cooked the same foods over and over again (sound familiar?). Eating seasonal foods encourages you to experience different produce, or experiment with one in particular. For example did you know that cauliflower and miso are – in my humble opinion - the best of friends?! Neither did I until I started experimenting.
Well being & Nutrition
Apart from allowing you to think more creatively in the kitchen, helping the community and eating tasty and fresh foods, eating seasonally just feels good. Green leafy vegetables, tomatoes and asparagus are all in season at the moment and they are perfect for warm days and chilly evenings. Eating with the season also means that we will consume different fresh foods depending on the time of year and our bodies will reap the rewards of a varied and nutritious diet.
So, what are your thoughts?