Quick! Get to a farmer’s market and load up on all the fresh produce you can carry, because before you know it, summer will be winding down, and enter warm, comforting food ( so exciting, right??? … but not yet!). August is such a great month for loading up on fresh fruits and vegetables. Peaches galore, sweet corn for days, humungous bundles of basil (gimme all the pesto, please!), I for one find it difficult to stop eating on farmer’s market days.
If you’ve been wondering how to make all this fresh goodness last, you’ve come to the right place. Although it won’t be SO fresh, there are ways to preserve the summer eats so that come winter, you aren’t yearning for warm days of summers past. Or maybe you are…
The benefits of eating in season are tremendous, and if you’re into eating local, simple ingredients, you are probably well acquainted with the in-season list. If not, here it is.
Begin by emptying your freezer.
This delicious veg is at its prime right now, and market stalls are bursting at the seams with all of the various kinds. The best way to preserve them for your winter stash is to freeze them. Chop them up into pieces, pop in a freezer bag, and voila, you are all set for hearty veg smoothies, and soups.
Once again, gimme all the pesto! Pesto is amazing on pasta, pizza, homemade hummus, salad dressings, etc. etc. etc. Have fun with your basil and make a few different batches to freeze (pour into ice cube trays, and when frozen pop out and into a freezer bag). Here are some great options.
Peach preserves are delicious, but unfortunately loaded with refined sugar, so the best way to keep peaches alive all winter long would be to chop up (when ripe) and freeze. Frozen peaches are great in smoothies, thrown into a cobbler or crumble, and just great defrosted and warmed up.
Frozen blueberries are really expensive, especially if you are getting the wild kind (which really are the best kind), so freezing them yourself while they are in season may get you the antioxidant fix you need for the winter.
So there’s apple sauce (apples are also in season so load up), and there’s pear sauce. If you have never made pear sauce from scratch, you are really missing out. Peal your pears if they aren’t organic, if they are leave the peal on, or at least most of it because, fibre. Place in a pot with a generous dash of cinnamon and about 4 teaspoons of coconut milk (the one from a can). Let simmer until tender. Blend. Freeze, if you can manage to not gobble it up before doing so. Have kiddos at home? They will love this!
How do you preserve all the fresh, summer goodness?