Oct 24th, 2006
Happy Tuesday Afternoon! Wow, can you believe it’s Tuesday already? :) Anyway, it’s the week before Halloween and fall is completely in swing. This is a great time of year to get out and enjoy the many farmers‘ markets in California and around the country! The weather is perfect, the fruits and vegetables are in season and it’s just a fun atmosphere to hang out in. You are supporting your local farmers, your food is fresh because it hasn’t been transported hundreds or thousands of miles to a grocery store and you are buying your food in season, a practice that we sometimes forget about. I have included a link below with a map of farmers‘ market locations in your area!
This whole concept of buying seasonally is something that doesn’t seem to have much significance anymore. I mean, you can go to the grocery store and buy asparagus in February. There is not a place in the US that can grow asparagus in February. It has probably been flown up from Chile’ some 6,000 miles away. This is as far from sustainability as it gets! The amount of fuel and time it took to get to your plate is ridiculous, never mind the fact that it tastes like an inner tube. Avoiding non-seasonal foods saves petroleum, supports your local economy and is healthier for you!
I am using asparagus as an example; most of the foods in the US are seasonal. Animals also are seasonal. The old timers used to say "Spring Chicken" because that’s when the chickens were slaughtered to be eaten in the spring and summer months. Other animals such as cattle and pigs were raised for slaughtered during the winter months. Of course, I am not advocating eating animals, and if you do, please ensure that they were raised and slaughtered humanely (don’t cheap out, spend the extra cash for a clear conscious).
It’s completely understandable that there are times and instances when eating in season and buying locally may be unfeasible (e.g. buying bananas, which are not grown in the US). However, every little bit counts and every person that practices this makes a difference!!!
I am not going to include benefits of being vegetarian (even one day a week) this week because this email is getting a bit long. I have included links to what’s in season in your area, farmers markets and a recipe for Ratatouille.
To find a farmers market in your area, visit this easy to use link: http://www.ams.usda.gov
Fruits and Vegetables in Season in Southern California
To find out what’s in season in your state, click this link http://www.sustainabletable
This streamlined version of a classic Provençal dish freezes well, so double or triple the recipe for future meals. If desired, stir some chopped fresh basil into the vegetables just before serving.
3 Tbs. garlic-flavored olive oil
2 large tomatoes, halved and sliced 1/2-inch thick
1 medium-sized eggplant, cut into 1-inch cubes
1/2 lb. zucchini, sliced crosswise 1-inch thick
1 medium-sized red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces
1. Heat oil over medium-low heat in large, deep skillet. Add tomatoes, eggplant , zucchini and bell pepper. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
2. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are very tender, about 20 minutes. Serve warm.
NOTE: This is excellent when put over pasta and/or put on a pizza crust and baked in the oven.
No comments yet.