Seasonal Eating and Eating Seasonally

Eating for the seasons conjures memories of fall harvests of squash and pumpkins, winter root veggies, spring rhubarb and fiddleheads, and summer berries and sweet corn. Of course, eating seasonally signifies something different to every culture and person; when I questioned one of my flatmates, he talked of potatoes in the winter, kale and lettuce in the summer, and picking blackberries as a kid during the warmer months. Though we might all have different ideas of what ‘seasonal food’ is, I think that the same underlying values of celebrating local food that has had few miles to travel is what underlies this instinctive way of eating.

Yet I cannot help but expand on what seasonal eating means. Though it is June here, it certainly feels a lot more like an Ontario fall than an Ontario summer, so I’ve found myself drawn toward my own ‘traditional’ fall foods than summer ones. Maybe this isn’t so much seasonal eating as it is intuitive eating, but it has had me mulling over the different motivations we have for the foods that we eat…beyond the regular health/ethical/environmental motivations that I’m usually pondering!

So, here you are, two very different ‘seasonal’ meals that have blossomed from my musings:

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Lentil soup with seasonal spring/summer nettle and Irish seaweed.

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Stuffed butternut squash, the roots of which can be traced back to wanting satisfying and hearty foods during chilly and blustery fall days…that tend to crop up every other Irish summer day!

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