V for Life

Eating with the seasons

Posted by Claire on 08/08/23 in Articles, Life After Retirement, Recipes

Nowadays we have become used to using supermarkets and finding foods all year round. You can get salads at any time and even buy strawberries at Christmas.

With current consumerism and supermarkets wanting to meet our food tastes and demands, we often forget that food has seasons. However, by eating seasonally we can enjoy food that often travels less – meaning that it will be healthier, tastier, and cost less.

When you buy food out of season it's either been grown in controlled conditions or has had to travel a long way making it more expensive to get to your plate. This also increases its carbon footprint. Furthermore, out of season foods are picked early to ripen during transport – meaning that they haven't ripened naturally in sunlight, so they won't have juicy succulent flavours.

As well as great taste, seasonal fruits and vegetables have been shown to be more nutrient rich. So by eating foods in season you can support local farmers, save money and have more nutritious tasty snacks and meals.

In the UK the longer (mostly) sunny days help to produce wonderful delicious summer fruits including soft berries and plums. Bright and beautiful raspberries and strawberries come from Scotland throughout the summer months.

With strawberries being one of the nation’s favourite fruits, we don't have to tell you that this versatile sweet fruit makes a tasty snack or quick dessert topped with whipped cream. Perfect for jams, preserves, and sauces, so you can enjoy them later in the year, too.

Ideal for baking in tarts, strawberries are a flavourful swap in our new take on the traditional Cherry Bakewell Tart. Strawberries and elderflowers together are the very essence of summer! Stirring strawberries into the glossy sauce adds texture and an extra layer of flavour.

A showstopping Strawberry and Elderflower Tart – this recipe is great for a Sunday lunch or special occasion.

For a refreshing and sweet dessert made with fresh strawberries or raspberries, our trifle is a perfect dessert for a warm summer day.

If are short on time or new to baking, a firm favourite with my family is a Raspberry Mug Cake, whipped up in minutes, and no baking skills required.

For another quick and easy dessert using juicy plums, why not try our Hot Plum Compote with Cinnamon?

Berries also add a sweet pop of flavour and colour to salads. With fennel and watercress having a longer growing season this refreshing salad is ideal for a quick lunch or light dinner.

Courgettes are widely available in the summer and can often give a bumper crop if grown at home. Our fritters make a great accompaniment to a salad or a delicious starter:

Curried Courgette Fritters

Greek Fritters with Tzatziki

Courgettes can even be used in cakes. Our Lemon and Courgette Cake is a moist sweet bake, with or without the icing, and counts towards your 5 a day. Perfect served with ice cream or custard.

Packed with nutrients and antioxidants, aubergines are versatile and give a wonderful smoky flavour when baked. Stuffed Aubergine makes a satisfying, filling and flavourful meal.

If you are looking to veganise a classic, a Greek-inspired Moussaka with thinly sliced potatoes and aubergines topped with a creamy ‘cheesy’ béchamel sauce makes a great midweek dinner.

You may not have heard of a Tian, Provençal baked vegetables using both aubergine and courgettes. It's a wholesome dish with a crunchy topping, perfect for sharing in the middle of the dinner table.

We hope that we have given you some food for thought and inspiration to make the most of seasonal produce, whether with a light meal or a show-stopping bake. Have an amazing summer.


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