Friday, September 14, 2007
Food Seasons...and other Crazy Concepts
As the heat and humidity of summer melts into the cool crispness of autumn, I look forward to the comfort food that comes with the cooler weather. While the bounty of summer and its sweet corn, juicy tomatoes, and bounty of produce grown virtually in our own backyard is a constant culinary inspiration, by September I am ready for cool evenings, sweaters, football, and fall foods. Winter squashes, oysters, soups and stews, and gingerbread have their own charms on cool evenings, and crockpot cooking becomes the norm in our house at least once a week once the nighttime temps are in the 50s.
Which brings me to a discussion my husband and I have every once in awhile when I suggest something for dinner that he says is "Fall food" in the summer, or "Summer food" in the winter. He has a very rigid way of categorizing foods based on when he feels they are best eaten. For example, taco salad is a "summer food" while any kind of pot pie is a "winter food". Roast turkey is a winter food, but roast chicken can be eaten year-round. His categories go beyond the logical, natural seasons of food, and don't always make sense to me, but apparently he is not alone. I have spoken to some other home cooks who also categorize foods this way and they have their own lists of what constitutes seasonal dishes. Here are some of our seasonal foods (according to Gavin), and please share with me how you approach the change of seasons- does it change the type of foods you plan?
Gazpacho (this makes sense to me!)
Italian Sausage (Kielbasa,however, is a "fall food" in case you were wondering)
Pork butt (picnic)
Ribs (babyback, but short ribs are a fall/winter food)
Lemon meringue or key lime pie
Leg of lamb
Any soup except gazpacho
Chili (any kind)
Squash (except zucchini which is a summer food)