• In season now: May

    New this month: Asparagus! The food of gods... and carrots are back.

    Still in season from last month: cauliflower, chard, green cabbage, salad leaves, main-crop potatoes (from store), salad leaves, sea kale, spring greens, rhubarb

    Goodbye till next year to: Purple sprouting broccoli (sniff, sniff), leeks, stored parsnips, forced rhubarb

  • What I’m doing here

    This all started when I picked the first strawberries from my new allotment.

    I'd never been so enraptured or so excited by food. It was a shock to find that anything could taste so good.

    So what - I'd never had strawberries before?

    No - all the strawberries I'd had were shop-bought, like as not flown in from intensive growers in Spain or Chile, and eaten in winter when strawberries should be a distant summer memory.

    It revolutionised my thinking about the fresh food we eat every day. I started to wonder if you got the same amazing taste from all types of food grown and eaten in season. And then I decided to do something about it.

    The Year of Eating Seasonally is my little experiment to find out what it's really like not to have it all. The only fruit and veg I and my family are going to eat in 2008 will be what's growing in the ground at the time (or, in winter, what I can get out of store).

    I want to find out if the hungry gap is really as hungry as everyone says it is: whether you're really eating nothing but cabbage all winter; and whether you miss strawberries in December.

    Along the way I hope I'll save a few tons of carbon being released into the atmosphere on my behalf, as I won't be requiring those French beans flown from Chile, thanks very much. And I hope I'll be rediscovering what food can really taste like.

    If you have any comments, please feel free to post them anywhere you like - or you can email me at sallywhite@hotmail.com.

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Luvverly roots

Domestic goddess rating: 90% Five-a-day: 5/5 Food miles: about 40 On the menu: Toast and juice (breakfast); filled pasta (lunch); root veg casserole and mashed potato (supper)

The great thing about this is that I get to try out loads of new things to cook. This probably applies to most families, but I’ve got into something of a rut just lately – if it’s Monday it’s baked spuds, if it’s Tuesday it’s spag bol… you know the kind of thing. That’s when eating fresh food goes by the wayside and you just sort of stop thinking. And you get bored. Really, really bored.

So since I didn’t much fancy cabbage this evening, I had a look around and found a recipe that used root veg instead. We ended up with a really good, hearty steamy casserole that was very healthy, vegetarian, 100% seasonal and so tasty even the kids wolfed down (wow – my kids eat swede… and turnip, too!). And it was a new find.

Between my swede-and-turnip mixtures and the cabbagey things I’m actually finding this is kind of interesting. Mind you if you ask me again at the end of February I might tell you different…


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