Spring vegetables
FOOD

Spring vegetables

Spring is the perfect time to celebrate a fresh approach to healthy eating.

Why choose in season produce?

 

The globalised food market has enabled us to get practically any food, at any time of the year, but, eating according to the seasons has many advantages...

You’ll get more nutrients
Freshly picked seasonal produce is likely to be higher in nutrients because it spends less time being transported and stored.

You’ll save money
Abundant supplies of in-season produce help keep costs down, so you’re likely to make significant savings to your weekly grocery bill.

Your food will taste better
Most chefs agree it’s impossible to surpass the look, flavour, aroma and texture of locally grown seasonal produce.

You’ll enjoy more variety
Eating seasonally will avoid the same old recipe repertoires, increasing the variety and the nutritional quality of your diet.

It’s better for the planet
There are significant fuel and carbon footprint costs involved in shipping out off season produce around the world.

 

The nutritional benefits of spring vegies


1. Asparagus- potassium for healthy blood pressure.
2. Beetroot- nitrates and antioxidants to enhance oxygen uptake.
3. Carrots- vitamin A and carotenoids which are being studied for their anti-cancer properties.
4. Chillies- lashings of vitamin C!
5. Spring onions- ­ the anti-inflammatory flavonoid quercetin.
6. Peas- vitamin K for blood clotting and bone health.
7. Baby spinach- folate for heart health and for healthy infant development during pregnancy.

 

Know your onions


There's a confusing variation in the naming of onions in Australia, so here are the true botanical names...

Green shallots- Long stems with narrow white bulbs. Also known as ‘scallions’ or ‘shallots’.
Spring onions- Long stems with larger white bulbs. Sometimes known as ‘salad onions’.
Eschallots- Small, brown, elongated onions. Also called ‘shallots’ or ‘French shallots’.

 

In season during spring


Asparagus- To keep bunches fresh, wrap in a clean, damp tea towel and store in the crisper. Perfect with bacon, tomato, soft cheese, eggs and salmon.
Dutch carrots- look great with a little of the stem attached; leave 2cm of the stem intact and peel. Perfect with soy sauce, coriander, ginger, honey, cumin, and chives.
Spring onions- are a lovely mild-­flavoured addition to salads. Try them stir-fried, braised or roasted. Store in a plastic bag in the crisper. Perfect with pastry, chicken, potato, peas and balsamic vinegar.

 

Fresh vegie recipes


Honey & cumin carrots
Place Dutch carrots in a baking dish, drizzle with honey and olive oil. Sprinkle with cumin seeds. Place in a 200°C oven for 30 minutes or until tender. Serve with baby spinach leaves and pork, beef or chicken. For an Asian twist, omit the cumin seeds and add grated fresh ginger and a drizzle of soy sauce to the honey and oil.

Braised spring vegetables
Thinly slice trimmed spring onions and sauté in a little olive oil until soft. Add peas, halved asparagus spears and a little chicken stock. Cover. Cook over a low heat until the vegies are tender. Serve with pan-fried French lamb cutlets and steamed chat potatoes.