Thursday, September 1, 2011
The September Harvest Calendar
An earthquake. A hurricane. Now what?
Hopefully autumn. A deepening of flavors, a richness to the light, a peaceful drawing in of days. It's not that I wish summer away, and we've had a lovely one without too much of the punishing heat the city usually musters, but I do look forward to autumn all year.
Most of September still belongs to summer, but the crops are bolder now, the colors and flavors a little brash in their intensity.
And peppers, peppers everywhere.
The herbs are at their sturdiest.
The rocambole garlic cured but still temptingly juicy.
And the fruit couldn't be more evocative of late summer. Blueberries, cantaloupes, peaches, and watermelon.
Apples are suddenly fresh, crisp, and early-season-tart rather than sickly and mealy from cold storage. And there are even a few pears about.
Other new harvests this month will include shell beans, brussels sprouts, lima beans, pumpkins and grapes. Plus the second pea and raspberry harvests are underway. Be sure to take advantage of beet greens, cucumbers, radishes, scallions, blueberries, cantaloupes, peaches, plums and prunes. This is the last month they’ll be available from the field.
Crop notes are 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. To familiarize yourself with what's in season where you live, I advise a visit to your own farmer's markets at least every couple of weeks. And ask lots of questions – no one knows which crops are at their peak quite like the people who grow them. To locate markets near you in the US, check the Zip or City Quick Search at Local Harvest.
Happy summer and happy September!