Seasonal eating is how we are supposed to eat and as I love the art of cooking, it is something that I try to do regardless of what is available in the local grocery store.
While you can pretty much get any ingredient at any time of the year these days, eating food, such as fruit and vegetables only when they are in season is a great way to add a wider variety of food into your diet. Furthermore, you have a better chance of eating high quality and more nutrient dense ingredients because they haven’t been ‘frozen in storage’ or shipped internationally.
On an even better note, it is very likely that you will save money, as out of season ingredients generally have a price hike due to the cost of shipping them in.
Here are my favourite ingredients to cook with in winter:
- The humble spud
Potatoes, when cooked and cooled become a form of resistant starch.vWe are unable to digest resistant starch, instead the starch (fibre) gets sent straight to our colon to feed our resident bacteria. As an added bonus, we may only receive as little as 50% of the calories from foods high in resistant starch.
Other forms of resistant starch include, cannellini beans, green bananas, cooked and cooled rice/pasta and potato starch.
Mushrooms are traditionally believed to have immune stimulating properties and are rich in fibre. There is a current swing towards ‘flexitarian’ eating and mushrooms are undoubtedly a healthy way to have equally satisfying meatless meals, some of my favourites include ‘mushroom meatloaf or mushroom bolognese on zucchini noodles’
This is a great vegetable to use during winter as it is rich in vitamin C and fibre. It is also lower carb than traditional comfort foods and can be used in replace of rice or potato. For a yummy twist on traditional pizza, you can even try making a cauliflower pizza base!
- Brussel sprouts
Brussel sprouts belong to the brassica family of vegetables and are rich in compounds, which support our body’s natural detoxification processes. Brussel sprouts are also rich in fibre and therefore keep us feeling fuller for longer and less likely to seek out comfort foods.
Beetroot is traditionally believed to support the livers detoxification processes. During winter detoxification is important because winter brings about an influx of bacteria. Beetroot is also rich in antioxidants which may be used to help build a strong immunity.
What winter vegetables are your favourite? Please share in the comments below.
Image courtesy of Shutterstock.com
By celebrity chef and nutritionist Zoe Bingley- Pullin