Fruit and vegetables all have a season. Eat seasonal highlights which food products are at their best each month to allow you to choose produce that is in season.
These days supermarkets offer all sorts of produce all year round. If you want strawberries in the winter you can get them. Apples in the spring? No problem. With fresh fruit and vegetables available all year round it is easy to forget that they have a season. Fresh fruit and vegetables have different times of year when they crop. Eating fruit and vegetables when they are in season will guarantee they taste better. The products will also be cheaper as they have been grown naturally and not been fooled into thinking it is time to grow.
Have you ever grown your own tomatoes? If you have you know that when you pick them off the vine after they have ripened all summer they taste fantastic. Compare the taste to the supermarket tomatoes you get in January. By comparison they are taste flat with little flavour. If you want meals that are full of flavour then choose ingredients that are in season.
What is in season in January?
January is a cold month which often brings frost and snow. The last few mornings have brought frost and I have had to take care on my morning walks in case I slip. Despite this plenty of vegetables and fruit are in season. Most of these are grown in the UK. A few of the fruit and vegetables are from more exotic climes but should be enjoyed whilst still at their best.
The best vegetables this month are root vegetables, think carrots, parsnips, turnips. Cabbages are also in season, red, white and green. Kale, a superfood which is rich in iron is at its best this month. The last of the apple and pear crop can be found in January as well as citrus fruits. Clementine’s, blood oranges and lemons should be enjoyed now. Don’t forget that meat, poultry and fish also have a season. Salmon is starting to come into its own in January. I have put together a graphic that shows what is seasonal in January. You can also download this and print it later as I have made it into a printable.
Parsnip and cauliflower soup
After Christmas I had a glut of vegetables in the fridge needing to be used up. I had rather a lot of parsnips as well as a cauliflower that I hadn’t got round to using. Knowing they would go off I turned them into a parsnip and cauliflower soup. Soup is perfect for this time of year when it is cold and frosty outside. There is something magical about putting a load of vegetables into a pot and watching them transform into a delicious soup. The delicious smell while they are cooking fills the kitchen with promise. When a streaming bowl is placed in front of you with a crusty bread roll it can’t help to warm you and make you think of spring.
Parsnips and cauliflowers work well in a soup creating a lovely creamy texture without the need for cream. The root vegetables are filling and warming. To add a little spice to the soup I added fennel seeds, caraway seeds and turmeric. I have been adding turmeric to a lot of things recently. Not only does it add a lovely golden tone turmeric is meant to have many health benefits. It is a natural antioxidant and anti-inflamitory as well as having properties that may prevent heart disease and Alzheimer’s disease. Adding a little to a dish gives it a lovely taste so it is a great way to take advantage of the possible health benefits.
Parsnip and cauliflower soup recipe
- 1 tbsp oil
- 1 cauliflower
- 3 parsnips
- 2 onions
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 1 tbsp fennel seeds
- 1 tsp caraway seeds
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 litre vegetable or chicken stock
- Chop the cauliflower into pieces.
- Peel and chop the onions, garlic and parsnips
- Heat the oil in a pan and add the vegetables
- Cook gently for ten minutes until soft
- Add the spices and cook for a few minutes whilst stirring.
- Add the stock and simmer for thirty minutes until the vegetables are tender
- Place in a food processor or blender and mix until smooth
- You may need to add a little more water to get a pourable soup.
- This will freeze if needed
Here are some other recipes that use seasonal ingredients for January if you want to try them.
Leek and potato soup
Do you use seasonable ingredients? Let me know below.
Linking up with the kitchen clearout linky on Madhouse Family Reviews as I used up loads of vegetables.