Saturday, September 5, 2009

Savoring the Season – The Feast of the Autumnal Harvest

The following is a list of the harvest of the autumn season. You have never really experienced a fruit or vegetable until you have enjoyed one that is fresh and in season. Grown local to your area is even better. Sample the harvest of autumn’s cornucopia. The fruits and vegetables listed below will be in season throughout the coming fall months.

Vegetables in Season September-October-November:

Acorn squash
Belgian endive
Brussels sprouts
Butter lettuce
Butternut squash
Celery root
Chayote squash
Daikon radish
Jalapeno peppers
Sweet potatoes
Swiss chard
Winter squash

Fruits in Season September-October-November:

Grapes… Don’t forget the vino! Crush is right around the corner! Judging by the amazing sweetness of the grapes this season, it’s going to be a good year.
Passion fruit

The Season’s Crowning Glory… Gorgeous Autumn Blooms:

Baby’s Breath
Gerbera Daisy
Queen Anne’s Lace

Ways to Celebrate the Season:

- If you feel so inspired, step into the spirit of this time of year by seeking out a local CSA (community supported agriculture) farm and sample some of the delicious seasonal produce. CSA’s often offer educational tours. It is a great way to connect with the land, the season, and the source of your food. A tour can be a fun and informative activity for the whole family and may become a favorite seasonal tradition that you’ll all look forward to year after year. You can find a CSA in your area by clicking on the link below and then entering your zip code in the CSA search feature located in the upper right hand side of the page.

- If you really want to get into the feel of autumn, check out a pumpkin patch, choose your own pumpkin to bring home and prepare as a meal. You can make lovely fragrant pumpkin bisque by first roasting the pumpkin in the oven to seal in that fall flavor. Nothing spells autumn more than the taste and scent of freshly roasted pumpkin. Don’t forget to save the seeds to toast up later. The kids love them and it is a wonderful way to get the whole family involved in tracing the origin of their meals. Let them participate in bringing the food from field to table. Obtain a nice crusty loaf of whole grain artisan bread to serve alongside the soup for dipping. Bring in more of those autumn flavors by slicing the bread, spreading with a blend of extra-virgin olive oil and butter, minced garlic, and freshly grated parmesan. Bake the cheese toasts in the oven until golden brown. Accompany this dish with a glass of bubbling apple cider and a crisp green salad topped with slices of Granny Smith apple and you will feel immersed in fall’s golden glow.

- Explore some seasonal recipes that incorporate the harvest. If you feel inspired by the creative energy of this season, concoct recipes of your own. Dive into the spirit of abundance inherent in this season by sharing the wealth of autumn recipes you have discovered here at the site.

- Brighten up your dining table with a bouquet of fall’s rich blooms.

- Gardeners in our group can carve out some quality time during the coming weeks to connect with their gardens. Create some space to simply sit and take in the beauty of the colorful blooms of amaranthus, anemone, cosmos, hypericum, kalanchoe, protea, salvia, Star of Bethlehem, and zinnia making their grand debut. Enjoy the fruits of all your tending and care.

- Get outdoors and take a walk against the backdrop of the warm golds, crimson reds, and festive oranges of the fall’s turning leaves. If you find yourself in wine country, don’t miss the breathtaking amber display of the vineyards. It is something to behold.

Celebrate the harvest we have been gifted by enjoying the bounty of the season.

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