We all hope spring is coming soon, with its abundance of fresh local foods and the openings of the farmers’ markets, but for today, it’s snowing and cold, and we are probably all tired of the winter vegetables. This is an excerpt from our Winter 2010 issue which may give you some ideas to liven up your end-of-winter recipes while still eating local.
The Bounty Never Ends: Yes, Virginia, there is local food in winter.
By Judy Liberson
If you’re a true locavore, do the winter months mean you have to eat snow? Or maybe suet on snow if you’re a local gourmand? No! Absolutely not. Still, it’s not as easy as in the warmer months when we shared our CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) stories, visited the markets and farms, and tried to buy as much fresh, just-picked product as possible.
Now we are faced with the long, dark days of winter and fewer choices to meet our personal food shopping goals. What is one to do? According to culinary historian Leni Sorensen from Monticello, it’s time to think seasonal availability. She reminds us of a world — not that long ago — when strawberries and similar fruits had a limited season instead of a year-round presence in our markets.
With the bounty of foods in our region and the growing popularity of “eating healthy and local,” there’s an explosion of new businesses bringing together eager consumers and market-savvy small farmers – and these business do not close their doors in the wintertime. What is happening in our Piedmont region is being replicated throughout the country — not solely for freshness. Anxiety about food safety goes hand and glove with the comfort of knowing the food source.
There is a list in the article with sources of local foods, but it is, of course, 5 years out of date. Check https://www.buylocalvirginia.org -they are a great source for finding local foods.