Monday, April 19, 2010

Eating Seasonably in a Northern Climate

Lately in my daily food blog & cooking magazine readings I've been so tempted by all the recipes featuring spring treats like asparagus, peas & strawberries but, I have to content myself with just bookmaking them for the time being. You see, here in Minneapolis its not unusual for us to have just had our last snow fall of the season so those spring treats are still a few weeks, if not a month, away. Our grocery store does have all of these items from California, Mexico, etc... but Matt & I are trying to eat more seasonably & locally. We aren't doing this 100% (hello, morning banana, I'm talking about you) but we are definitely much more conscience of where our food is from & when it is available. I think this time of year is particularly hard as we are really craving those fresh spring greens & tired of the foods of winter. Luckily the Minneapolis Farmer's Market was open for an impromptu market this weekend.
Flowers to PlantVeggies for the Garden
Most of the market was local meats, fresh flowers, vegetables & flowers to plant, and produce from California & Mexico but we were happy to find a few local early spring vegetables.
Spring Farmer's Market Haul
I can't tell you how thrilled I was to see this baby spinach, spring onions & over-wintered parsnips from Little Canada, MN. Plus I filled my whole basket for $5.00!

This year we'll spend more time preparing to get through winter & early spring. We'll freeze more broccoli, beans, corn, spinach & kale. Last year we finished all our frozen beans in November!
#219 - Our Stash
We'll can as much as we did last year if not more. I can't tell you how much we have enjoyed that stash of homemade jams, relishes, salsas & canned tomatoes in our basement. I do believe we'll go a whole year without buying any of those items from a store.

I think this is a good time to mention we won't be doing a CSA this year. We have really enjoyed being members of Harmony Valley over the last two years. We've got to try so many new things & it helped us to focus on what was in season. At the same time using what was in the box sometimes became a burden for the two of us, we often found ourselves leaving things at the pick up site because we don't care for them or knew we wouldn't get through them. On top of that we just love our local farmer's market, The Kingfield Market. We find it such a treat to go there on Sunday mornings & plan our weekly menu by what is in the market. We like getting a chance to talk to the farmers. So instead of seeing what was in our CSA box every two weeks now we'll be showing you what's in season in the market & how we use it.

On to Menu Planning Monday...

Chicken Tikka Masala - using some chicken breasts we got at the farmers market & left over sauce from last week tikka masala pizza (recipe tomorrow)

Sausage & Spring Onion Tart

Wednesday we are talking a Pork Belly Cooking Class at Corner Table

Beef Phyllo Rolls

Grilled Steak Salad

Saturday I think we'll be eating out again first lunch at the Chef Shacks Earth Day Party & then probably dinner at Craftsman.

If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at OR at then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted.
© 2007-2010 Kathy Lewinski


Stacey Snacks said...

You and I are on the same wave length today, preparing healthier choices, welcoming the spring season with veggies!

Kate said...

I too am eagerly waiting for everything to come into season in the markets. We have satellite markets with a 10 minute drive of us Tues-Fri so the option of fresh veggies is never-ending. I love how inexpensive everything is, and hearing the farmers talk of their produce with such affection. I am so very excited for this coming season!!

Lisa at lil fish studios said...

I am chomping at the bit to get my garden planted. Oh fresh I miss thee.

I can too, and hope to at least double what I've done in years past. I ran out early this year and really regretted it over the long (lonnnnnng) winter.

grace said...

i'll be looking forward to your posts almost as much as i'll be looking forward to my own crops coming in! :)

Lisa Paul said...

You are so inspirational. However, everything is pretty much in season at any time in California. Although my local gardening store keeps warning me not to plant my tomatoes until May 1st in case of frost. Frost? I can't remember what year we had one of those.

Lori said...

Lets see, I have a hard time thinking about life without bananas, mangoes, avcadoes, pineapple... Oh man! BUt I try too to eat more seasonably and locally. I can definitely kick up my game a bit more. My husband and I are also going to purchase some local meats. Little by little we are becoming more aware and more responsible.

sweetlife said...

sausage and spring onion I can't wait


Anonymous said...

I feel your pain about lack of seasonal choices, but my dilemma is not weather related, but culture. Asparagus is not known in Bulgarian cooking, so it usually comes imported from Greece, which is about 3 hours away. Still it is not available in my town. Trust me I check all the grocery stores everyday. My list of asparagus recipes to try is growing exponentially.

Alicia Foodycat said...

I know the feeling! All the newspapers right now are doing features on broad beans and asparagus, but it's going to be weeks before they are available! But thank god we are starting to see some spring greens. I was becoming a bit tired of turnips.

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