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What do you eat in January?

Jan. 11, 2008

In her book Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, Barbara Kingsolver has a whole chapter entitled “What do you eat in January?” (and she lives on a farm!). And although it is a baffling 50 degrees here in NYC, the calendar does suggest that it’s January, as does the food at the market (potatoes, onions, winter squash).

A quick look at the links on Field to Plate will show what’s available by season in your area. For us New Yorkers, it’s basically a handy tool for figuring out where we wish we lived instead right about now–January is pretty slim pickings compared to, say, California.

And so: what do YOU eat in January?

Slow Food Northeast Regional Governor Rosemary Melli had this to say:

Here’s what we do in the dreary New England winter, while we’re dreaming of the first greens of spring:

- My friend who runs Eva’s Garden here in So. Dartmouth, MA choppes up fresh parsnips, carrots, Macumber turnips, chick weed, parsley, and leek tops, which are still growing on the farm, and marinates with olio & balsamic for a salad course.

- I jar small, hot red peppers in olio & vinegar, then stuff them with whatever sparks my imagination - capers, anchovies, cheese, breadcrumb mixture, etc.

- I use good, polenta meal, cook it in the oven in stock til it’s creamy, then use as a base for roasted root vegetables, stews, etc.

- Beans, beans, beans - must be fresh and cooked just right; combine with sauteed winter greens (kale, collard, mustard, swiss chard); seasoned with pancetta, bacon, proscuitto, sausages, etc.; add pastas and cheeses; combine as soups, ragouts, ragus, etc.

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