ColumnIs there anything better than all the good food that spring brings us?
Spring represents many things. The end of winter. A time of rebirth. A countdown to summer.
For me, it’s a celebration of good food. Certainly, there is good food to be had all year around, but there is something extra special about spring.
Now is the time when the root vegetables are replaced by more exciting ingredients; a time when every week that you go to the market, a new vegetable that you had almost forgotten about pops up. It’s a time when we come out of our hibernating slumber and shake off the desires of heavy comfort food and start to turn towards fresher dishes. Things start to grow. Fresh herbs come back into our kitchen pots. We start dreaming of dinners outside.
Summer is a time when good weather is a given, when berries and vegetables abound and everything tastes good. Spring is more subtle, a gentle surprise. It comes slowly, certain foods quietly making their way back and into our everyday meals. A radish here, some asparagus there. The culinary cobwebs of winter are dusted off and you experience a new found feeling of inspiration. You want to chop, you want to mix, you want to pull things from the garden.
Spring is a glorious season for food, and it’s a season that begs for simplicity.
Time and time again I come back to my core concept of good food, with good people, from good places. It doesn’t have to be complicated, in fact, most of the time, I don’t even want it to be. When a dish is simple, there’s nothing to hide behind. If the ingredients are bad, then so is the food.
And why make spring food complicated? There are artichokes. There is asparagus. There are leeks. The options are endless, with only a few ingredients. Spring is a time where food preparation doesn’t need to be much more than dusting off the dirt from the ends of the radishes.
Spring is a season where sometimes a dinner table is no more than an open space on the ground. A season where the ray of sunshine shining through the window onto your morning coffee cup feels like the start of something completely new. As the vegetables come back, we too are renewed. Refreshed.
So, if you’ve been considering changing how you eat, now is the time to start. Now is the time to embrace seasonality. Now is the time to start learning about where your food comes from. Now is the time to give up the processed foods. Because spring is the perfect reminder of all the good, natural food that there is around us.
Good food is as close to you as the nearest garden. Somewhere, something is growing. That is the beauty of spring. So make time to go out and celebrate. Go into the season with abandon. Eat well and eat often; spring is begging you to do so.
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This is the latest installment of Anna Brones’ weekly column at EcoSalon: Foodie Underground, an exploration of what’s new and different in the underground movement, and how we make the topic of good food more accessible to everyone. More musings on the topic can be found at www.foodieunderground.com.
Image: Anna Brones