What’s in season? - Winter foods
WINTER…..this season there is a great variety of vegetables to purchase and prepare for the dinner table.
In Perth this time of year, the range of fruits and vegetables available is maybe not quite as abundant as some other seasons but there is still much to choose from. And just a little reminder that shopping in season is an ideal way to save a few dollars.
According to my sources, vegetable prices are coming down this season so there are no excuses!
Maybe now’s the time to get pickling, jam-making, or bottling, adding a new string to your bow this winter. Or, if you’re not feeling that adventurous, why not just try a few new recipes this month.
Currently there is still a good choice of apples available and kiwis are also fresh and delicious this time of year, as are melons, pawpaw and pears. Root vegetables are coming into their own this season and there are many to choose from. Ideal for crock pot or slow cooker recipes.
Because root vegetables grow underground, they absorb an abundance of nutrients from the soil. They are packed with antioxidants, vitamins and iron which makes them not only a delicious choice for the cool, winter months but a healthy choice to help defend against colds and flu.
Just a few of those hearty vegetables to try this season include leeks, swedes, turnip, parsnips and kohl rabi.
Winter fruits in season in Perth
- Apples (Lady Williams, Pink Lady and Sundowners)
- Honeydew melon
- Nashi pears
- Navel oranges
Paw Paw (or papaya)
This delicious little fruit is grown in tropical areas and is in season now here in Perth. It is known for its health benefits and is used by many for medicinal and therapeutic purposes. Paw Paw contains fibre, folate, vitamins, calcium, riboflavine and antioxidants, is low in calories and sodium and high in Vitamin C. This fruit is great in salads, desserts or on its own.
The humble pear is another very nutritional and healthy fruit alternative this season. Pears are a great source of dietary fibre.
The very versatile pear can be enjoyed in salads, in tarts and cakes, and even in soups. There are hundreds of delicious pear recipes to try to ensure your family is not only happy, but healthy too. Chocolate and pear tart, rocket salad with poached pears, or perhaps cauliflower, pear and blue cheese soup?
Limes, navel oranges and kumquats are all in season at the moment and as we all know citrus fruits are high in Vitamin C. And what does Vitamin C do for us? - No it probably doesn't prevent the common cold but it is nevertheless good for us and the body does need daily doses.
Why not try your hand this winter at some pickling, jam-making or bottling. Oranges and limes are beautiful fruits to use for either. But they are also delicious in drinks, snacks, desserts, or confectionery.
Kumquats too are a delicious citrus fruit although probably not quite as popular. The whole of the kumquat can be eaten, no need to peel, and again rich in Vitamin C.
Winter vegetables in season now in Perth
- Kohl rabi
- Silver beets
Whose mouth doesn’t water at the thought of a scrumptious Sunday lamb roast, with crispy roast potatoes, gravy AND a piping hot serving of delicious cauliflower cheese? A definite favourite in my house.
There is so much you can do with this versatile plant. Why not try creamy cauliflower soup, or potato and cauliflower curry (yum!) or for those watching their weight, cauliflower rice (also a great way to get the kids to eat more veges.)
Rhubarb is a vegetable although most of us think of it as a fruit. Rhubarb and apple crumble, with smooth, velvety custard is always a crowd pleaser, rhubarb tart, rhubarb trifle, rhubarb compote. BUT did you know that rhubarb is also delicious actually served as a vegetable? No? I thought not. Why not try rhubarb and ginger with pork belly? The rhubarb and ginger cut through the richness of the pork belly and, I can vouch, is a gastronomical delight!!
I am the first to admit that turnips are not very exciting. On their own, absolutely nothing special and not a vegetable you may choose if you want to impress. But add them to thinly sliced leeks (also in season in Perth), gently sautéed in butter for a creamy leek and turnip soup and you might be surprised. Or why not try a vegetarian chickpea and turnip curry or even crispy turnip fries.
And there you have it….. Just an example of what is fresh and in season this winter in Perth.