In Season: Winter Produce
Published December 2015
Fresh From December Through March
Winter can feel like a dead patch when it comes to picking in-season produce. But when your healthy diet is already up against comfort food and rich holiday meals, choosing fresh fruits and vegetables is as important as ever. From December through March, turn your attention to citrus fruits, which contain vitamin D that can help compensate for the lack of sun exposure. Also look to vegetables like parsnips, which require frost to develop their sweet, nutty flavor.
Looking for Local
Outdoor Chicago farmers’ markets close at the end of October, but luckily many relocate to an indoor location when the temperature drops. Check with your local market to find out whether they have a winter location, or look online to find an all-seasons option. And even if winter means a more traditional store for your groceries, knowing what produce is in season can help inform healthy and fresh shopping from any vendor.
Community-supported agriculture (CSA) also remains an option for produce from local farms as long as the crops last. Reach out to a local CSA farm to see what produce they provide through the season. However, because most CSA programs are subscription- or membership-based, your best option may be signing up for next year’s produce.
Whether at the grocery or through a farm, the following are healthy picks in the winter months.
- Blood Oranges
- Brussels Sprouts
See your seasonal produce in action in these three recipes: