This Fall, Long Live the Fruit and Vegetables in Season !
Consuming foods that are in season has many advantages: a reduction of the pollution associated with transportation, encouraging the local economy, and most of all, a higher concentration of vitamins and minerals!
So, why not take advantage of this season so high in colors to rediscover some foods grown in our beautiful province?
Here are a few suggestions of fresh fall foods for inspiration.
A good source of copper and vitamin C, this crucifer can be eaten both raw (with raw vegetables, grated, or in salads) and cooked (boiled, pureed, glazed, or stuffed). In addition, its leaves are full of antioxidants and glucosinolates (compounds that are said to protect us against some cancers).
Also a cruciferous vegetable, this vegetable is an excellent source of vitamin A, C, and K, in addition to containing calcium and iron. Why not try your own coleslaw recipe, or you could also stuff it for a typical fall meal to share with friends?
Plums and prunes
These small fruits are well-known for their laxative effect, but they are also full of antioxidants, iron, and vitamin B6, compounds that are renowned to help prevent heart diseases. Try them in compotes, sauces, puddings, or as stuffing.
The juice from this vegetable has gained in popularity lately, thanks to its effect on athletic performance. However, the whole vegetable is also a good thing to integrate in your nutrition since it is full of potassium (which improves blood pressure), iron (good for vitality), B-compound vitamins (for energy), and calcium (for strong bones). Try it grated, in salads, or in vinegar. The leaves are just as delicious, and are prepared the same way as spinach.
There are many varieties of this vegetable, and they are all excellent sources of potassium and vitamin A. My personal crushes are butternut, pumpkin, and spaghetti. Add them to your nutrition by preparing them as fries or puree, adding them to your potages, or to replace pasta for a taste of autumn! Most of all, do not throw away the seeds, as they are renowned to cure urinary infections when oven-baked, and some even say they have aphrodisiac virtues!
I love the acidulous taste of this fruit that is bursting with vitamin C and potassium, which are beneficial both for blood circulation and the urinary tract. They can be savoured in juices as well as in compotes and chutneys, and serve as a wonderful side dish for poultry.
As for you, what are your favourite local foods during this time of the year?
By Alina Petre, P.Dt., Nutritionist