Simply in Season

28 Sep

As part of our “quest” to go green and live healthier, we’re trying to do more shopping at our local farmer’s market and Co-op.  Did you know that, on average, an item of food on an American table has traveled 1000 miles before we purchased it?  Buying locally not only cuts down on the costs to transport produce from across the country (or world), but also supports local small farms and organic farming practices that are better for the environment.  I’m also all about keeping as many chemicals as possible off our plates.

This goal creates a new problem, however.  Buying locally means that I’m limited to what’s currently in season.  Hmmm….this requires some creative planning and cooking.  Not so easy for a gal who tends to have a few favorite recipes that she keeps recycling over and over (Hey! Recycling is GOOD, right?).

Thankfully, the cookbook Simply in Season, is a wonderful help in this area.  It includes an entire section of itemized fruits and veggies with descriptions, selection tips, nutrient information, conversions from raw weight to cleaned/prepared cups, and summaries of how to store, handle, prepare and serve.  This section also includes general information on how to keep fruits and veggies fresh and preserve their nutritional content.  The rest of the bok is divided into seasons.  Each season contains a table of contents by categories like soups, salads, main dishes, etc.  The final section is called “All Seasons” and includes recipes prepared with things that are available throughout the years.

The index makes quick reference a snap.  I can look up a fruit or vegetable and flip right to recipes that use it. A few of the recipes (like “Persimmon Pudding”) we might take a pass on, but what cookbook doesn’t have a few recipes that make you say, “Wha??”  The majority of the recipes sound absolutely delicious and require relatively few and easy to find ingredients.  I also love that the cookbook is spiral bound (although it’s also available in paperback) and that the sections are color coded.

I think you’ll love it too!

This just in!!!  Today I found Simply in Season Children’s Cookbook and purchased it!  It’s wonderfully illustrated with interesting facts for kiddos about fruits and veggies.  Like this fact: “Fresh apples float because 25% of their volume is air.”  Or this one: “Strawberries are the only fruit with seeds on the outside.”  This cookbook is also divided into seasonal sections, with easy, KID-FRIENDLY recipes for younger kids to help with, or older kids to do on their own.  Need a way to make vegetables fun?  How about “Green Monster Soup” with broccoli, cauliflower and potatoes?  It looks delicious to me, and something tells me if kids hear that name and help make it, they might be at least a little more interested….  I can’t wait to try the “Secret Chocolate Cake” made with beets and applesauce.  It looks scrumptious (even though it sounds kind of gross…).  This book is also spiral bound and has a quick reference index in the back.

Get cookin’!


Posted by on September 28, 2008 in Family, Product Reviews, Recipes


4 responses to “Simply in Season

  1. Maura

    September 29, 2008 at 12:10 am

    Sounds fresh & tasty. I think if you try the “Secret Chocolate Cake” you might be pleasantly surprised — those two actually work well in chocolate cake!

  2. manager mom

    September 29, 2008 at 12:32 pm

    Nobody has ever accused me of being a good cook, but I am going to definitely check out the kids cookbook. thanks for the tip!

  3. Insta-mom

    September 29, 2008 at 4:52 pm

    We get all our produce from a co-op that ships the food directly from the farm in central CA to us (and we get to stand in line on Saturdays to pick it up–fun times). Anyway, unless I buy at the market, we always eat “in season.” I love it, and we’ve gotten to try lots of new foods as a result. Think I’m going to go buy this book now, too!

  4. Renée aka Mekhismom

    September 30, 2008 at 12:07 am

    Thanks for this post. It reminds me to shop at the farmers market and I also need to locate these books. i am truly at a loss right now regarding food to cook for my little one. I need to back on the right track with cooking.


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