There is a season - turn, turn, turn
And a time for every purpose under heaven
A time to be born, a time to die
A time to plant, a time to reap
When we think about eating locally and seasonally, we usually imagine produce. But in reality, nearly all foods have a season: meat, seafood, even eggs. The eggs our chickens lay vary widely in color and production throughout the year.
Here's what's in season for late March in Western Washington. Please don't hesitate to add to and correct this list. I'm learning, too!
PRODUCE (from http://www.nrdc.org/health/foodmiles)
- From the fall crop: apples, pears, winter squash, potatoes
- Root vegetables (most from fall crops): carrots, onions, garlic
- Hearty greens: chard, kale, collards
Dandelions are also in season. Pick the tender leaver now before the plants' flower stalks emerge. The leaves are delicious with a warm mustard and bacon dressing and a hard-boiled egg. I ate dandelion leaves often as a poor exchange student in France. Check out this link for info about nutrition and preparation.
I have friends who go mushroom hunting, something I've never done. I've never loved mushrooms but would be interested in learning more about it. Get info at the Puget Sound Mycological Society's website.
Because wild fish don't hold still, I included fish caught off the coasts of Washington, British Columbia, and Alaska for the purposes of this list.
- Razor clams - season dates and locations
- Some Alaskan salmon, look for sustainable and wild-caught
- Halibut, sablefish, and black cod (March to November)
- King salmon
This time of year in the Pacific Northwest, it's all about the daffodils, baby! Yesterday I bought 60 daffodils for a mere 6 bucks. The daffs are from the Puyallup Valley, just miles from our house. The buds were tightly closed and green yesterday. Today, as you can see, they are beginning to turn yellow and open. They make my heart happy.
Tulips are also in stores but they're still a bit early. Grab handfuls of daffodils now and wait for the tulips.
MEAT (from Eat the Seasons, a British website but included because of similarity of climate)
Personally, I love rabbit and lamb. Get over the Disney-fication of these animals. They're delicious and they're in season now.