The joy of seasonal produce

One of the best things about eating seasonally is the distinct bursts of flavour you get with each new season. Right now it is the taste of citrus. There really is nothing like it – the sweetness of a navel orange with the juice just dripping from it.

But the taste isn’t the only reason to eat seasonally. Grow Lightly has a commitment to sustainable use of resources and the building of a resilient local community. In particular, we seek to encourage local food production and distribution using organic methods and sustainable agricultural techniques. And this means that the food we eat is harvested just before it is sold and thus it has a higher nutritional value. It is cheaper when it is in season and at Grow Lightly everything we sell fresh is in season. And it is better for the environment as well.

The growers that Grow Lightly sources their produce from agree with the Grow Lightly Charter, which states that the growers will:

  • Produce foods of high nutritional value, without recourse to synthetic fertilisers, herbicides or pesticides – foods which enhance the health of those who grow and eat them
  • Work with natural systems
  • Maintain and increase the biological activity in and fertility of our soil
  • Use renewable resources, giving priority to those produced locally
  • Extend the range of locally organically grown foods available in south Gippsland, particularly those grown from open-pollinated seed
  • Find out more and share our knowledge about food plant varieties which grow well in Southern Gippsland, including native Australian food plants.

In my garden at the moment it is warrigal green that are just propelling themselves out of the ground (and you can buy warrigal greens at the Grow Lightly Food Hub). Here is a recipe for warrigal green pesto:

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Ingredients

2 cups warrigal greens
1/2 cup pine nuts or walnuts
2/3 cup olive oil
3 cloves garlic
3/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
salt and pepper to taste

1. Steam warrigal greens until soft

2. Combine garlic and soft warrigal greens in a processor and blend until consistency is like running cream.

3. Add nuts and parmesan and then oil and salt and pepper to taste. You can add more oil if necessary.

Recipe adapted from the Beelarong Community Farm website.