eat seasonally, valentine ...


Valentine's day is this Friday. (Happy heart day!) I'm not a huge celebrator of this holiday of Love, but I do remember candy hearts and making valentine bags for collecting cards/candy in elementary school. It was definitely not the day to be sick at school! One year, my best friend bought me a surprise carnation and I was so happy. I ran up the stairs to show my mom and tripped up one of the last steps ... the flower snapped off right at the blossom! Ugh ... I was seriously devastated.

(This klutz still trips up the stairs, but you didn't hear that from me.)

All of that to say, holidays are high time for eating. And, most likely, not seasonally. For instance, I literally just saw a local advertisement for a pound of strawberries at $1.88 this week.

Um, it's February.

There is snow on the ground.

No Kansas strawberries in sight. 

strawberries from our garden, last June
Oh, they're in Kansas, all right. Waiting patiently at the grocery store. For all of us loves to come, buy and consume with chocolate.

Personally, I'm not buying strawberries this year. Not only because they are on the "dirty" list, but mostly because they aren't in season.

I love this quote from an essay in Less is More,

As Helen (Nearing) put it, "There is something extravagant and irresponsible about eating strawberries in January." When I first heard this comment, I was a bit put off: I found it quote ascetic and demanding. But now, although my own gardening and eating practices are never quote as pure, I understand more fully what she means. Eating in line with the season is eating on nature's time, not on culture's consumptive clock. No wonder that the kale we harvested from our garden this week tastes so sweet. We ate in step with the heartiness of kale in autumn, in step with the November frosts that kiss the bitterness off of the leaves.

There is something so right about eating seasonally. But it is so difficult- especially in the winter and when growing in Kansas is very difficult. Almost anything and everything is available in grocery stores year-round ... we are so spoiled. Spoiled to the point of not even knowing, much less caring, about eating with the seasons. Mostly, I fall into this category.

I don't have the chance to grow and/or store a ton of food. So, what are your tips for eating seasonally? Help!

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