Eat seasonally with this savory fall/winter recipe with roasted stuffed acorn squash, sweet Italian sausage, spinach, garlic, onion, and dried cranberries.
Table of Contents
Eating in Season
We try to eat in-season as much as possible for a number of reasons.
What does it mean to eat seasonally?
Eating seasonally is a more sustainable approach to food. It encourages a person to eat fruit and vegetables that are in season in a given geographical area. For example, in New Jersey tomatoes are in season in the summer. The plants grow from late spring until early fall. Tomatoes are therefore not eaten during the winter. Any tomatoes that are available in the winter come from far away. Even in those areas they may be grown out of season, are very dull in color (almost white on the inside), and just taste gross.
Acorn squash are considered a winter squash. However they grow during the summer time. They are called winter squash because unlike summer squash that have a soft skin, winter squash have a hard rind. The rind allows the winter squash to be kept in storage for long periods of time. If they are properly stored, they can last from summer and through winter.
Here are some of the reasons why we eat seasonally and why you should consider it as well:
- The food just tastes better! Nothing tastes better than a tomato that was grown in-season and ripened naturally. Tomatoes are usually a vibrant red, extremely juicy, have a phenomenal taste, and should be soft. They shouldn’t be pale on the inside. If they’re pale on the inside or even white, that means the tomato is not ripe. Unripe tomatoes are hard and are just plain gross.
- The price is lower. When produce is purchased in-season, it’ll be more abundant and therefore cheaper. Produce that’s purchased out of season will always be more expensive. Using tomatoes as our example, start comparing prices when they are purchased in the summer versus the winter.
- It’s better for the environment. If produce is purchased in-season, it’s probably from a farm that’s nearby. It did not travel far across the country and had a short trip to the store. This ultimately has an environmental impact by reducing fuel emissions and transportation costs. By buying locally you’re supporting local farmers and the local economy.
- It encourages a variety of fruits and vegetables in your diet and you’re not eating the same food year long.
- There’s better nutrition. Produce that is east in-season is more nutrient dense than those that are grown out of season and unnaturally ripen.
How to Get Started Eating Seasonally
- Research what is in season according to your geographical location and buy only those items at the grocery store. We’re familiar with what’s eat in the summer (zucchini, tomatoes, eggplant, etc), but what about the other seasons?
- Conduct a Google search and find out where your local farmers are. Once you’ve located them, visit their farmer’s market.
- Look into Community Supported Agriculture, or CSA. It’s a monthly or yearly subscription program with your local farmer(s). The farmer(s) provide a weekly or monthly box of produce.
- Check out different recipes based on the season by doing a search like “fall recipes”.
This stuffed acorn squash recipe is also a great start because it’s still in season.
Tools You’ll Need
- Cutting board
- Baking sheet
- Frying Pan
- Fork or potato masher
Other Recipes You Make Like:
Enjoy and bon appetit!