Why Does Eating Seasonally Matter? With a Seasonal Chutney Recipe
Environmental justice really matters to us. As individuals, making just one small change to your lifestyle can make the biggest of difference. Lifestyle changes such as home composting, planting trees and pollinator-friendly plants, using renewable energy, investing in sustainable clothing, eating less meat and eating seasonally, are all examples of small changes which can help to restore the environment.
Today, we’re focusing on eating seasonally. What’s all the fuss about? Why does it matter? Why should we care all!? Here’s all you need to know…
What is Eating Seasonally?
It’s all go in the 21st century; 24-hour supermarkets have aisles as far as you can see, stocked with fruits and vegetables from all over the world. Our favourite produce is readily available, in abundance, all of the time. The majority of fruits and vegetables are being grown somewhere in the world in every season, so eating seasonally means eating produce that’s grown now, in your country.
Top FIVE Reasons to Eat Seasonally
The Carbon Output
Eating local, seasonal fruits and vegetables reduces the demand for out of season produce – minimizing the strain on resources for transportation of such goods.
When produce is grown in artificial, managed conditions in your own country, or transported from another where it grows naturally, this costs money – which is passed on to the consumer.
Spending days or weeks squashed up in shipping containers can cause produce to spoil, and takes away the freshness that local, seasonally-grown produce offers.
The Local Farmers
The globalized food distribution system often forces farmers to join large-scale enterprises to survive. Small-scale, local farmers rely on more natural methods, such as organic practices that benefit crop, land and people – which it’s so important to support! Eating seasonally also helps farmers through their leanest time of year, winter.
When you eat seasonally, you’re forced to think outside the box and try produce and recipes you might not have ordinarily opted for. You’ll have plenty of variation in your diet – and you’ll soon find yourself looking forward to the next season for your next dose of different produce.
What is in Season in the UK Right Now?
How to Make Your Own Christmas Chutney
Using Seasonal Ingredients
Use your seasonal ingredients this winter by whipping up a delightful Christmas chutney. Whether you gift to a friend, serve to guests or keep for yourself is entirely up to you! Please note this recipe makes approx. four x 500g jars.
YOU WILL NEED
625g cooking apples, cored and chopped
750g pears, peeled, cored and chopped
4 onions, chopped
25g root ginger, peeled, shredded
100g dried cranberries
2 tsp peppercorns
2 cinnamon sticks
500g Traidcraft granulated sugar
250ml cider or white wine vinegar
300g fresh cranberries
HOW TO MAKE
- Take your glass jars – extra eco-points to you if they’re repurposed glass jars! Make sure you have sterilized your jars by washing thoroughly, then putting them in the oven at 140˚C to dry for around 30 minutes. Alternatively you could sterilize in a dishwasher.
- Add all of the ingredients to a pan, apart from fresh cranberries. Simmer on medum heat until sugar has dissolved.
- Once sugar has completely dissolved, bring mixture to the boil, then reduce heat to low to simmer. Simmer the mixture, uncovered, for about an hour until thickened, whilst stirring occasionally.
- At this point, add your fresh cranberries and then heat for an additional 10 minutes to soften them.
- Remove from heat and carefully remove cinnamon sticks.
- Spoon the hot chutney into the jars and seal. Get creative with decorating and labelling your homemade chutney jars.