What’s in season for spring?
When you eat farm to table, fresh, in season produce from your local certified farmer’s market and/or local farm stands and grocery stores, you get the most nutrients from your foods because they don’t have to be processed, freeze-dried or preserved with chemicals to prevent food spoilage. So, fresh = healthy.
Additionally, because the produce is grown locally, it doesn’t have to be transported over long distances, thus eliminating the associated pollution.
Circulating your spending dollars locally also helps contribute to a thriving local economy.
What’s In Season in Ventura County?
Sustainable Ventura News recently visited the Midtown Ventura Certified Farmer’s Market at Pacific View Mall, (Wednesdays, 9:00am to 1:00pm), and spoke to local farmers and chefs asking, “what’s in season?”
Scratch Food Truck/Chef Tim Kilcoyne
“I make it a point to go to the Certified Farmer’s Markets on Wednesdays (at Pacific View Mall, 9:00am – 1:00pm) and Saturdays ((Downtown, Santa Clara and Palm, 8:30am – 12:00pm), because all the produce is so fresh and tasty, having been picked either that morning or just the day before,” said Scratch Food Truck’s Chef Tim Kilcoyne. “I also enjoy talking to the local farmers about what’s coming up so I can plan the Scratch Food Truck menu.”
Chef Tim found a bounty of blood oranges and tangerines, now at the tail end of their season, in order to make blood orange style lemonade. Also on the menu today is a salad with roasted baby carrots, pistachios, feta cheese with blood orange vinaigrette.
“In April through May, “continued Chef Tim, “depending upon the weather, I like to purchase spring peas, snap peas, cauliflower and broccoli (which you can also get throughout the year).”
F&F Farms/Farmer Fred Ellrott
“We only sell at Certified Farmer’s Markets and one crop we have in abundance right now is our Bacon avocados,” said Farmer Fred Ellrott with F&F Farms out of Moorpark. “In April and May, we’ll have Haas avocados. This time of year we also have artichokes, and they’ll still be in season for a few months. Right now at the farm, we’re also planting a new crop of greens, kale, chard, arugula, sorrel, and specialty greens that will be in full swing by April and May. “
Farmer Fred also sells a variety of specialty mushrooms and beets, and in the summer, figs. He offers customers great tips on how to prepare what’s in season as well as recipe ideas.
Harry’s Berries/Rick and Molly Gean
Passing through the market’s attractive produce isles, one can’t help notice that Harry’s Berries makes a delicious statement with its impressive display of large, delectable fresh, organic strawberries.
“We pick our strawberries almost all year long,” said Molly Gean, family representative for Harry’s Berries. “We started picking this new crop mid-January, and we’ll continue through to September. We pick fresh every day, what we don’t sell that day, winds up either juiced and sold as strawberry juice, or preserves (both of which are sold at the markets), along with our dill beans and salsa.”
About two years ago Harry’s Berries took steps to become Certified Organic, and while that makes their produce a little more expensive than non-certified varieties, customers can rest assured that no fumigants, methyl bromine or methyl iodide are used in cultivating their crops. Harries Berries can be found at a variety of Certified Farmer’s Markets throughout the week, for a schedule visit: harrysberries.com
More of what’s in season for spring thru summer:
|Fennel (fall through early spring)||Avocados|
|Green onions/Scallions||Blood orange|
|Peas (garden, snap, snow, etc.)||Grapefruit|
|Radishes||Kiwis (winter through spring)|
|Asparagus||Lemons (winter to early summer)|
|Broccoli raab||Valencia & Navel oranges|
|Carrots||Kumquats (late winter, early spring)|
For more information, visit: cafarmersmarkets.com
Don’t live in Ventura County, Ca? To find out what’s in season where you live, Google “What’s in season for spring?” or “Your City name and local certified farmer’s markets” to find out!
–Maryann Ridini Spencer for SustainableVentura.TV