eating seasonally

Fauxmiddlechild alerted me to the existence of Epicurious's Seasonal Ingredient Map.  It seems pretty cool, although it isn't quite matching what I'm actually seeing at the Farmer's Market.  For example swiss chard isn't listed, and supposedly Washington State has produce during March but Oregon State is dormant-huh?  She was lamenting that she was unfamiliar with seasonal produce.  I want to say, don't feel to bad about it.  The supermarket culture of the past who-knows-how-long has separated us from this knowledge – so unless you are a gardener (of the edible varieties) this stuff is no longer common knowledge.  I'm still trying to get a handle on such things in my new locale (previously I was a lucky duck who got the excess from Mom's garden). 

Farmer's Markets are a good guide (if yours doesn't allow trucked in stuff like the one near our old house- no FM in the Midwest should ever be able to sell kiwis or mango or pineapples, I'm still irritated by it).  Of course some vendors have things like large greenhouses up their sleeve and I think that confuses things, I know I was confused when I saw cucumbers two weeks ago, before I had even seen strawberries.

I'm really excited that we finally were able to subscribe to a CSA this year (I've been wanting to since I learned of their existence like 9 years ago; of course previously we moved every summer and would just get the overabundance of our parents gardens so a CSA didn't quite fit our life).  We had to subscribe/join in early April and even then a couple farms I contacted had already filled all of their subscriber slots.  And due to the crappy "spring" we haven't gotten a share yet, my fingers are crossed it will happen soon.  I've been toying with the idea of taking a picture of our weekly shared bounty.

I also have 4 plants on my patio since this is a want-to-garden year in my want-to/no-way gardening cycle (so far I have a year where I attempt to garden, which is generally a bust wrt to all but a couple hard-to-kill houseplants, followed by a couple years where I say "nope" to gardening and then a lust for gardening hits again).  I planted a spearmint plant, an italian parsley plant, 3 basil plants and a 24" window box of nasturtium seeds that have been kind enough to actually sprout (they are about 3" tall now with 2 leaves each).  Since I haven't killed anything yet (in the 3 weeks I've had the stuff planted) I'm considering adding a rosemary plant and maybe some radishes or lettuces.

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June 4, 2008. Tags: , . Thoughts.

2 Comments

  1. fauxmiddlechild replied:

    part of it's is that I live in California and it's possible to get pretty much everything year round … I just need to pay more attention to where things are grown when I hit the Farmer's Market. I would love to do a CSA. Maybe next year.

  2. fractone replied:

    As long as I'm buying it at the farmer's market (ours doesn't allow trucked in stuff) or at the food co-op, I don't worry too much about the food being in season. I mean, if the farmers are selling it in droves, it must be in season, right?That being said, I WON'T buy Omaha Red tomatoes. I know they are greenhouse-raised, and they just taste like…they just taste crummy. I'll wait for July or August for my red babies, thank you very much.I am worried about missing the apricots, though. Around here, you can usually only get them one weekend a year. Crazy, huh? Last time I got some, I was pregnant with the bean. I already missed the darn morels. Sigh.Did you know that Whole Foods published a seasonal foods guide last year? I have one on my fridge, mostly for laughs…it's as mixed up as any supermarket-raised kid (our entire generation). Tomatoes in APRIL?!!

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