Eating seasonally is better for you; Heres how to do it!

There are so many reasons to start eating seasonably. For one thing, it means your food tastes a whole lot better. If you think the blueberries in your porridge every morning are growing in vast quantities down the road, you’re sorely mistaken. In order to even get here, they have to be transported from the other side of the world. They can spoil on the way there or they’re picked when they’re unripe. Taste is compromised.

Plus, all that shipping food around the world isn’t great for the environment. When there’s demand for it, it will always find a way to consumer’s kitchens, by plane, train and lorry. All that transport means that your food isn’t fresh or cheap. Stored in shipping containers for days on end means your food is days old by the time it gets to you and all the transport is costly, so the food is more expensive to buy as a result.

assorted fruits at the market

So save your money, your planet, your wallet and your stomach by starting to eat in season from locally sources.

EatSeasonably.co.uk celebrates eating the right things at the right time: a crisp salad when it’s hot and sunny, a wholesome stew when it’s cold; strawberries in June and Brussel sprouts in December. They have your top guide to finding out what growing locally at every stage of the year!

January's best:

Kale

Green Leafed Plant

Kale grows best in the coldest of months, particularly January. That means it’s everywhere right now, just in time for Veganuary! Perfect for bulking up the goodness and iron in hearty stews and soups.

EatSeasonably.co.uk says; ‘Try it sautéed with chilli and garlic and use it to dress pasta with a good lug of olive oil, salt and pepper and a sprinkling of Parmesan cheese.’

Carrots

8 Piece of Carrot on Brown Chopping Board

A winter favourite, these crunchy and tasty treats will be fresh all winter. Making warming winter soups or sweet and nutritional carrot cake to tide over that sweet tooth!

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Great in a Lebanese style salad—make a dressing by bashing up some toasted cumin seeds in a pestle and mortar with a little bit of garlic and some salt. Stir through some olive oil and lemon juice and use to dress finely shredded carrot. Season well and finish with freshly chopped coriander leaves.’

February's best:

Leeks

Sliced Celery on Cooking Pan

Great for fighting colds, and known for their anti-oxidants and vitamins, the leek is a winter staple.

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Add chopped and boiled leeks to mashed potato with a good knob of butter and plenty of black pepper. Try wrapping parboiled leeks in smoked ham, pouring over a bit of white sauce, sprinkling over breadcrumbs and baking until golden brown. Great with bread and butter.’

Savoy cabbage

Green Leaf Plant in Close Up Photography

The Savoy is a lovely addition to Sunday lunch.

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Fry finely sliced cabbage with pancetta and finely sliced garlic—this works brilliantly with game. Stir fry finely shredded cabbage with garlic, ginger and a little sesame oil - delicious served with chicken or salmon.’

March's best:

Spring Greens

Crop women showing basket with green vegetables and herbs

Fresh and full of nutrients, the squeaky-leaved spring green cabbage is great value and a great addition to any spring plate.

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Spring bubble and squeak for breakfast—try frying an onion in a non-stick pan until soft, then add cooked shredded cabbage and cooked crushed potatoes and fry until brown and crusty underneath. Turn over and brown the other side. Delicious with smoked bacon and a poached egg.’

April's best:

Cauliflower

Person in Gray Button Up Shirt Holding White Stone

One of the few vegetables that is in season almost all year round, the versatile cauliflower is having a comeback, especially with a little melted cheese over the top!

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Delicious roasted with spices like cumin and coriander and served with a good sprinkling of sea salt and a squeeze of lemon. Try making a lighter cauliflower cheese by parboiling and then roasting cauliflower florets on a buttered roasting tray with a sprinkling of Parmesan.’

May's best:

Rhubarb

orange and green plant on gray concrete pot

Versatile enough to both form classic ‘comfort food’ puddings and work extremely well with meat. A childhood classic it will bring back warm memories.

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Try making a crumble with a few balls of chopped up stem ginger. The flavours work brilliantly together. Poach rhubarb in orange juice and zest, cinnamon and a sprinkling of sugar and serve in a magnificent pavlova. Mix poached rhubarb with double cream and spread inside a Victoria sponge.’

Asparagus

brown chopping board

In season for just a few short weeks it’s a lovely addition to a summer dinner. Light and refreshing and packed full of goodness!

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Try using perfectly cooked spears to dunk into soft boiled eggs. Try asparagus griddled and served with a drizzle of your best extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper, a squeeze of lemon juice and a grating of Parmesan.’

June's best:

Peas

Full Frame Shot of Green Peas

Naturally sweet and full of protein, these plate fillers are super versatile!

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Try smashing up raw peas with some olive oil, salt and pepper and then spreading over bruschetta with some torn pieces of mozzarella and mint leaves.’

Broad Beans

Green Round Fruit on White Ceramic Bowl

At their best in June, these diverse all-rounders are great boiled, buttered and munched with freshly-baked bread. A little seasoning and voila! Lunch!

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Delicious eaten raw with lumps of pecorino. Try lightly cooking them and serving in a salad of chopped soft herbs like chervil, parsley, mint and tarragon and a white wine vinegar and olive oil dressing.’

Strawberries

Red Strawberries

A super summer sweet treat, these are perfect for picnics and desserts. Make any pavlova fresh and zingy with a sweet summer berry!

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Try marinating them in the zest and juice of an orange and a lemon and a sprinkle of caster sugar. Chill for an hour or so and serve with cream and meringues and a little chopped mint on top, if you like.’

July's best:

Cherries

Shallow Focus Photography of Red Cherry

Another summer fruit star, the cherry is sweet, fresh and delicious. Versatile enough to work in a dessert or dinner, they’re the perfect summer treat|!

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Delicious in a clafoutis. Try lightly poaching with orange juice and a little sugar and serving with good quality chocolate ice cream for a black forest pudding.’

Cucumber

sliced cucumber on black textile

Cool, fresh and hydrating, the cucumber can just as easily be used to bring highly nutritious freshness to a wide range of dishes and salads.

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Peel and slice the cucumber as thinly as possible. Then arrange in a dish and pour over warmed rice wine vinegar and caster sugar. Sprinkle with finely chopped dill, season with salt and pepper and leave to marinate. Drain before serving.’

Curly Lettuce

Green Leaf Plant

A welcome addition to any salad, this staple is a summery salad’s best friend.

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Try making a very simple salad with soft herbs like chervil, basil and parsley and dressing carefully with a perfect vinaigrette.’

August's best:

Raspberries

Red Raspberry

Jam, tarts, ice cream, cake, the possibilities are endless with these ripe and juicy berries that are summer crowd pleasers.

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Try lightly crushing some raspberries with a little icing sugar and orange juice, then folding through softly whipped vanilla cream and serving with freshly baked shortbread.’

Plums

Crop faceless lady demonstrating bowl of ripe halved plums against pink background

Sweet and ripe plums are another versatile fruit that can make any summer dish.

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Try making a spiced plum compote with five spice, port, vinegar, cinnamon and orange juice and zest. Delicious served with roast pork.’

Cos Lettuce

green plant in close up photography

Also known as romaine lettuce, this salad basic is key in a crunchy and fresh Caesar salad.

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Essential for making the perfect Caesar salad with crunchy croutons and creamy dressing.’

September's best:

Blackberries

Black Fruits

Lush, dark and flavourful, these berries are a great end of the warm weather treat. Growing almost everywhere in September, find your local hedgerow and see how many you can find!

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Try adding a handful to an apple crumble for a beautiful Autumnal pudding. Try warming some blackberries with a little brandy and sugar. Delicious served with ice cream and sprinkled with toasted flaked almonds or toasted hazelnuts.’

Runner Beans

green pepper lot

Crunchy and delicious, runner beans are divine when buttered up and paired with a classic Sunday roast.

Our quick and tasty tips:

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Great stir fried with a little oil, chopped red chilli, garlic, a splash of sherry, rice vinegar and a sprinkling of sugar. Use them in a relish to serve with cheese. Try them in a salad with new potatoes, crumbled pancetta and an oil and lemon dressing.’

Courgette

3 Zuchini Brown Wooden Surface

Pop it in a stir-fry, a ratatouille or a roast dinner! The courgette is great whatever way!

EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Try finely slicing raw courgette with a mandolin and dressing with the zest and juice of a lemon, some good olive oil and salt and pepper. Scatter over some finely chopped chilli or some mint. Delicious served in an omelette with basil or mint and some feta cheese.’

October's best:

Sweetcorn

Yellow Corn

Sweetcorn, on the cob, from a can or whatever way is the perfect snack and addition to lunchtime. Juicy and sweet, it’s a favourite in our house.  

EatSeasonably.co.uk says ‘Try blackening in a dry non-stick pan, then slicing off the kernels and mixing with lime, chopped tomato, chilli, mango and mint for a delicious salsa.’

Cox Apples

person holding three red apple fruits

The lunchbox staple. Crispy sweet and nutritious, you can’t go wrong with the classic apple.  

EatSeasonably.co.uk says ‘Try sautéeing quartered and peeled apples in butter with a handful of sultanas until golden. Add a lug of calvados, a sprinkling of sugar and a squeeze of lemon juice and continue to cook until just tender. Delicious served with ice cream and pancakes.’

November's best:

Potatoes

Potatoes

A base for lots of dinners, cheap to buy in bulk and chocked with vitamins and minerals, this super diverse treat can make any meal.

EatSeasonably.co.uk says ‘Try making olive oil mash by adding a good lug to your potatoes before mashing with a knob of butter and plenty of black pepper. Excellent with grilled fish and lamb.’

Red Cabbage

Pink and White Petals on White Surface

The perfect companion to a rich dinner, this sweet and colourful cabbage is winter’s flash of colour. Wonderful when cooked with lamb.

 EatSeasonably.co.uk says, ‘Try braising with apple, smoked bacon and balsamic vinegar. Serve sprinkled with freshly chopped parsley leaves. Try stir frying finely shredded red cabbage in butter and oil with ground spices like cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg, some chopped apple, a splash of red wine vinegar and a sprinkling of sugar. Delicious with sausages and roast ham.’

December's best:

Brussel Sprouts

Green Round Vegetables

Full of goodness and a Christmas Dinner must have, these little veggies pack a goodness punch!

EatSeasonably.co.uk says ‘Try tossing hot cooked buttered sprouts with some finely chopped rosemary, crispy pancetta and crumbled chestnuts. Season well with pepper.’

(Source)

Fiona Murphy is a freelance writer, specialising in book-related content, fiction and poetry. She can be found drinking tea, craving tapas or attempting to finish her never-ending-novel.

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