What's in Season in Kansas City: Winter 2014

By Dianna Sinni RD, LD / Photography By Dianna Sinni RD, LD | January 01, 2014
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MEAT & DAIRY

Beef
Bison
Cheese: Artisan
and Farmstead
Chicken
Eggs
Lamb
Milk
Pork

OTHER

Breads and Pastries
Granola and Grains
Honey
Jams and Jellies
Jerky

STORAGE VEGETABLES

Beets
Cabbage
Carrots
Kohlrabi
Onions
Parsnips
Potatoes
Pumpkins
Rutabaga
Salsify
Squash: Winter
Sweet Potatoes

Winter is all about comforting foods to warm and nourish our bodies. Although eating in season becomes more limited during the bleak cold months, it is possible. Focus on creating meals around ingredients that provide immune boosting nutrients like Vitamin C, K, and antioxidants. Here are some ideas for shopping and cooking in season this winter:

SEEK OUT SEASONAL FROM OTHER REGIONS

The growing season in Kansas and Missouri shifts into hibernation during the winter months, and our local farmers are cozied up with their seed catalogs plotting out their plans for the coming season. Although you can still find locally grown winter greens, squash, and root vegetables at Bad Seed’s Winter Farmer’s Market and grocery stores like Whole Foods Market, a great way to add variety to your plate in both flavor and nutrition is by supplementing with seasonal produce from other national regions. Citrus fruits like clementines, grapefruit, and satsumas add flair to winter salads, are delicious for breakfast, and are great for on-the-go snacks.

STOCK UP ON BULK

Bulk foods are wonderful pantry staples. Dried beans and whole grains add fiber, plant-based protein, and nourishing vitamins and minerals to bulk up winter’s plethora of soups and stews. Although not always available locally in season, these ingredients are available year round. Buying beans and whole grains dried is a little more work in the kitchen, but ultimately richer in flavor, texture, and more cost-effective than their canned counterparts (canned is still a nutritious convenient option, look for low or no salt).

COOK WITH WARMING SPICES

Beat the cold weather by stimulating your senses with aromatic, warming spices such as ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, turmeric, cumin, and chile. Chile peppers and powders are full of capsaicin, a naturally occurring compound that acts as a vasodilator, stimulating blood flow and creating a flush of warmth throughout the body. Ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg create bold flavor and aroma while aiding in the body’s anti-inflammatory response and soothing the tummy.

Try this Indian Red Lentil Soup as a great way to incorporate local greens, budget-friendly lentils, and warming spices.

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