Coun­try Mouse

Eat what’s in sea­son

Country Life Every Week - - Town & Country -

THE front cover of the Daily Mail screamed ‘Veg ra­tioning in su­per­mar­kets’ and in­side the pa­per were pic­tures of se­cu­rity guards stand­ing next to boxes of cour­gettes and, after panic buy­ing, bar­ren shelves in shops. The world is clearly com­ing to an end.

Wide­spread flood­ing in Spain, where many of the veg­eta­bles are grown, has caused prices to soar and cour­gettes are now be­ing sourced from the USA. But hang on: do we re­ally need cour­gettes in Fe­bru­ary? Have we for­got­ten about eat­ing in sea­son, re­duc­ing the air miles on what we con­sume and our own na­tion’s food se­cu­rity?

Home­grown leeks, Savoy cab­bage, pur­ple sprout­ing broccoli, the vast ar­ray of root veg­eta­bles and the im­pos­si­bly chic kale are all at their best now. In March, we can look for­ward to spring greens; in April: cau­li­flower, fol­lowed by as­para­gus and peas. The cour­gettes should wait for Septem­ber.

Eat­ing in sea­son not only makes sense fi­nan­cially, it also means that you’ll be eat­ing home­grown pro­duce at its tasti­est. The lack of knowl­edge of where our food comes from and our overde­pen­dence on for­eign im­ports is a se­ri­ous chal­lenge to our farm­ing com­mu­nity and to our bank bal­ances. MH

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