Here at Snowbeast Performance getting our food from nature. If you watch our Instagram stories, you know we love adventuring for new ways to get food.
As we head into the summer months, it’s obvious, but there is a shift in the weather, the food that we buy, and the foods that we are eating.
When we head into June, July and August, we can now enjoy fresh berries and vegetables, less costly produce from the supermarkets, and overall incorporating more variety back into our diets.
Foods that are abundant in the summer hydrate, refresh, and rejuvenate.
In the world we live in now we can still get that produce that is not in season during the winter. However, those strawberries or corn on the cob that you are buying in December come from a far distance to get to you, and that is not the best for our planet. Yes, it is amazing to be able to eat some foods that would never grow in our region (Avocado and banana trees in Vermont? Probably not), but we disconnect from what nature provides us with throughout the year.
Eating seasonally is something that we need to bring back into our daily lives.
What does eating seasonally mean?
When we go to the grocery store, we can buy all the fruits and vegetables, however that does not mean that they are in season and that we should be eating them. There are certain fruits and vegetables that thrive at certain times of the year.
Vermont Summer Food Examples
All Berries (Raspberries, Blueberries, Blackberries)
And so much more
However, we aren’t used to eating what is in season because we can buy everything from the supermarket throughout the whole year. The flavor, the freshness, and the nutrients provided are at their best when we buy what is in season.
Why is eating seasonally important?
It is better for your health
Foods that are grown and eaten during their optimal seasons contain more nutrition. When fruits and vegetables are harvested during their peak season, they have a higher amount of nutrients compared to being harvested not at peak season. When foods are grown out of season, their natural growing and ripening rhythms are out of balance. So in order for certain produce to be available in supermarkets year round, chemicals and treatments are used. Not the best for our health.
Eating seasonally grown produce is also better for our mind. When eating the perfectly ripe berries in the summer just picked from the garden, that makes you happy, right? Of course. Certain foods affect our mood-modifying brain chemicals, and can affect how we feel after eating those foods. When eating carbohydrates and sweet sugar from the berries those chemicals make us feel happy and enlightened.
It supports the community
Buying locally grown food helps support local farms. Because the growing season is so short in Vermont, the summer months are critical for farmers. When we support them, we support their farm so they can continue to provide for the community. Local farms support the local economy. Food grown locally, processed locally, and distributed locally, generates jobs and helps stimulate local economies.
It can be more cost effective
When fruits and vegetables are in season, they are abundant and available at a lower price. In Vermont, we have a lot of farmers, a lot of farmers markets, and a lot of produce. It is easy to get fresh fruits and vegetables in the summer, so take advantage of it. It is better for the environment
Sticking to local produce can help you discover what is in season near you, and knowing that it did not travel across seas and continents to get to your plate. When thinking about the produce that you buy, think about how many miles that food traveled before it got to you. If it came from quite some distance, that means a lot of energy was put into that food to get to you. Processing materials, packaging materials, distribution materials, fuel emissions, etc.
However, if I choose to buy berries from the farm 2 miles down the road in June, I know that the berries are in season and they probably were just packaged up and delivered right to where I am buying them now.
Obviously in the winter, it is hard to buy local produce, however, being aware and conscious of the foods that you are buying and the distance they are traveling to get to you is a useful skill in learning the sustainability of your eating habits.
How do I eat seasonally in the summer?
Summer is the season of abundance. There are very few things that are not in season. Rather than buying frozen berries or canned tomatoes like you would in the winter, you can buy all that fresh produce in the summer. The best way to know whether or not something is in season is to go to a local farmers market or use the Vermont Seasonal Food Guide to search what is in season near you.
Stay up to date with Our Instagram to see some videos and recipe ideas for summer produce! Also tag us if you make a recipe or buy local produce, we would love to see what you find!
A recipe for Strawberries:
Last week I went with some friends to get strawberries from a local berry farm, Full Belly Farm VT.
We decided to use these berries to make some strawberry scones!
2 ¾ cups King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
⅓ cup granulated sugar
¾ teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold - I used plant-based butter, but you can use any butter variety
1 cup to 2 cups chopped strawberries
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
½ to ⅔ cup almond milk (or regular milk)
Add all dry ingredients in one bowl and whisk. Add chopped strawberries
Mix wet ingredients apart from butter.
Cube the butter and with fingers make a fine crumble with the dry ingredients
USing a spatula slowly add wet ingredients into the dry.
Once a dough is formed, place onto a lined baking sheet and split in half. Make two 1 inch circles. Cut these circles into 4ths or 6ths and then separate.
Place the tray in the freezer for 30 minutes.
Once chilled, place the tray in 425 oven for 18 minutes or until golden brown.
Ashleigh Angle, Snowbeast Performance