Monday, October 5, 2015

Eating Omily: Changing Seasons, Changing Menus

I can't believe how quickly this Summer flew by! The Farmers' Market is still overflowing with delicious produce, but some of those treats are on the wane...stock up on tomatoes and berries right now! We usually get our first frost around mid-October, which will be the death knell for many of those summer treats. We can still enjoy watermelon, along with winter squash, apples, and grapes, though, and I'm seeing more kinds of pears this year than ever before! I'm loving the bright red pears I'm seeing, as sweet and tender as Bartlett's, but so visually striking!!

Other Autumn specialties to avail yourselves of? Whiskey! Ok, you can get whiskey at the Farmers' Market ANY time of year (which is amazing!!!), but isn't this just the perfect time of year to bring it back onto the bar?? Ok, so I drink whiskey any time of year...but seriously, Manhattans? In the Fall? Yes. All of them.
And how about, lima beans! Not kidding! These universally hated veggies have a season, and it is now, AND, trust me, if you've only ever had the canned, or even frozen variety that have the texture (and roughly the flavor) of sawdust, you're going to want to try fresh lima beans! Simmer in salted water till tender, then sauté in butter with onions, garlics, late season tomatoes, whatever sounds good to you. You'll thank me.
Autumn is also a great season for baking: apple crisps and pies, sweet potato pie...mmmmmm...and your treats will taste even better and be better for you if you opt for local grass-fed butter, and locally grown flour! 

I also find myself drawn to eat more meat as the weather cools. I love making hearty strews in my slow cooker that only taste better when I reheat the leftovers later. Try goat, bison, duck, and rabbit from the Farmers' Market, or stick to the tried and true classics like beef. They've got that, too. Ask the farmer what cut they recommend, and what herbs, spices, and veggies they like to add in. I promise you'll leave with a mouth-watering recipe!
No matter how your tastes shift with the weather, you'll be able to put together spectacular meals with the Farmers' Market harvest. Get out there and see for yourself!

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