seasonal eating ~ edible-fall
Today there is a resurgence of folks trying to eat within the boundaries of their local geography and with good reason : local, seasonal food, prepared and eaten properly supports vibrant health and energy and is sustainable for the earth. The thing is, it’s easier to accomplish during the long warm days of summer – when the harvest is plentiful and bringing it to the table is as simple as a trip to the farmer’s market, local market or your own backyard.
Seasonal cooking takes effort but with an adventuresome palette – a willingness to experiment – you can make your meals a seasonal thanksgiving of your landscapes harvest. It’s simpler than you might think!
In our area of the mid-atlantic, the early days of September have already begun to melt away the lingering rays of a hot and lazy summer. The fresh morning chill settles in overnight heralding the first days of autumn. Waxing and waning…. it all blends together, these seasonal changes. Those last warm days of summer are actually the first cool days of autumn. and with that our Indian Summer ushers in a whole new variety of possibilities at the farmers market.
In these past few weeks, hearty fall vegetables have made their annual debut, and their rich unpretentious earthy colors are a prelude to same colorful beauty our eastern forests display in their show of fall leaves – just before they shed to adorn the forest floor.
Foods in your local season, tend to support your wellness in that season. Fall foods are warming foods. Produce that matures in cooler months generally contain more calories than their summer counter-parts, and come with their own complement of nutrients. By helping our bodies acclimate to our regional weather, they perpetuate our health and may help prevent frequent seasonal ailments.
So here they are, the first butternut squashes, oddly colored and shaped gourds, beets and of course – the fall favorite – pumpkins, all emerging at the farmer’s market.
Virginia and West Virgnia is apple country, and those too are sure not to disappoint – especially not the heirloom varieties that farmers are lovingly resurrecting for locals hungry for real food!
As the weather changes, so to does our pantry… and a well-stocked pantry is the only way we’ve found to cook with ease at home. Posts in the upcoming weeks will include stocking our fall pantries with a few basics, to make this seasons cooking simple and easy.
Our favorite food of the season is soup… the backbone of which is broth and that simple humble and nourishing broth is the perfect canvas to highlight so many of the glorious foods of autumn. And that is the feature future posts – broth and soups and stews!