Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The February Harvest Calendar

Thank you so much for all your lovely messages welcoming me back to the blogosphere. I've been overwhelmed by your kindness. As some of you know, I've been peeking in from time to time, but now I'm relishing a real catch up on all that I've missed over the past months. Actually years. That was quite a baby break! But having a baby is a big deal, there's just no way around it. And I can't tell you how cheering it's been to hear from you all and to read up on your beautiful sites as I ease back in.

It's been cold here. Lots of snow too. But I'm not complaining. I love the snow. The farmers at the market though, they're looking pretty frozen.

Though those girls from Hudson Valley Duck Farm put a good face on it. They have some nice looking duck sausage with cherries and some confit I've been eyeing for a proper cassoulet. Only 7 weeks until spring after all, so I'd better make the most of what's left of winter.

The market's quiet now, especially on Mondays, which are always the slowest day.

Of course there are some vegetables from the farmers who have hydro tents, but there haven't been any open field harvests for quite some time. I do love the great tangles of mushrooms from John D. Madura Farms.

What's left from storage - think beets, parsley root, celeriac, and carrots - is starting to look almost as though it came from some alien world.

There’s still good flavor there though.

Plus, if you look carefully, there's some color to be found. Intense, wintery jewel tones like jarred homemade tomato soup, gleaming red onions and cipollini, and of course all those glorious preserves to perk up pan sauces, cheese boards, or even just your morning toast.

After this month there will be no beets until June, pears will practically disappear until September, and we won't be seeing winter squash or turnips until November, so take advantage while you can.

As always, crop information is available in the sidebar harvest calendar over there on the right all month. The information comes from a guide published by the CENYC, which runs the Greenmarket & New Farmer Development Project. Of course, the best way to familiarize yourself with what's in season where you live is to visit farmer's markets in your area at least every couple of weeks. I truly learn the most of all from the farmers themselves. So ask questions at the market – it’s the best way to find out which crops are not only available, but at their peak. To locate markets near you in the US, check the Zip or City Quick Search at Local Harvest.

Happy winter, and happy February!


tribecachef said...

Love the sprouts coming out of that parsley root. Great shot.

Joanne Rendell said...

Yum. I suddenly have a big yearning for roasted turnips!

Figs, Bay, Wine said...

Tribecachef, thank you! I must do something with parsley root soon before it's gone.

Jo, I felt guilty I didn't have a turnip recipe to link. Maybe we need a turnip roasting event soon : )

Karen@GreenwichImports said...

Beautiful round up.

Gloria said...

Thanks for stopping by, waht nice and lovely pictures, here we have a really hot time (summer) I want some snow!! seriously I love atumn! x gloria

Toffeeapple said...

How I wish our Farmer's Markets were similar to yours. I don't think you'd see vegetables looking like that here, everything seems to be wrapped in plastic.

Figs, Bay, Wine said...

Karen, thank you. Very different from a few months ago!

Gloria, I really crave autumn and winter in the summer months too. Hope you stay cool.

Toffeeapple, I wish they wouldn't do that! Charm goes a long way with me. I even feel mildly peeved when they shrink wrap the cookies.

Lucy said...

Far out...those duck sausages sound wonderful!

I just heard that the groundhog says it's gonna be an early spring, so I'm crossing everything for you. Fresh greens are coming!

Gloria said...

Dear I forget to said you Im so glad to see you again and you blog look awesome and nice!!!xx gloria

Gary in Provence said...

We've been poaching pears in wine this winter. It's a great end to a meal.

Figs, Bay, Wine said...

Lucy, I'll confess I am dreaming of asparagus. And rhubarb. And lettuce.

Gloria, aren't you kind, thank you! I'm happy to be back and back in touch with everyone.

Gary, poached pears are delicious! They're a classic for a reason, and so pretty too.

Sylvia said...

You back!!!Miss your wonderful posts. See you on facebook and what a great surprise to see you back.

Cynthia said...

When I saw your comment on my blog, I did a double take! I kept asking myself, is it possible? Is it really her? Is she back!

I am so thrilled to see you again. Congrats on the baby and I hope that life has been treating you splendidly.

Welcome back my friend.

Sending warm hugs.

Figs, Bay, Wine said...

Sylvia, thank you!! I'm so glad to be back, and it's great to hear from you!!

Cynthia, aren't you nice? I'm having a great time easing back into things, and your site's looking great! So happy to hear from you!

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