• 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.

Unhealthy (but tasty) eating

Domestic goddess rating: 100% (I stay off school – therefore I cook) Five-a-day: 5/5 Food miles: about 10

On the menu: toast, jam & juice (breakfast); chicken soup (lunch); cheesy leek and PSB bake, spring greens and mash (supper)

This evening’s supper was a bit of a heart attack on a stick – cheese, milk, eggs, butter, all in abundance and its artery-furring qualities only slightly cancelled out by being full of lovely leafy green seasonal vegetables. As my husband pointed out, all the ingredients except the PSB and the leeks were on his red list (that’s the list the doctor gave him of foods he should avoid to save himself keeling over from excess of dairy products). So I’m kind of hoping he’s still alive to tell the tale in the morning.

It did taste quite spectacularly yummy, though, so if you’re not that bothered about your cholesterol levels, go for it. Nobody ever said seasonal eating had to be healthy…

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