Best of the Web: Seasonal eating for July

After months of dealing with immigration paperwork and organising packing and shipping, I have finally made it to California. I’ve been living in San Francisco for a week and I’m loving it so far.

We have a great green grocer right around the corner from our house and I’ve also been to the farmers’ market at the Ferry Building in downtown San Francisco. Right now there is an abundance of peaches and nectarines – and they are really good. For a few dollars, you can buy a bag of organic white peaches or nectarines, which are juicy with a lovely clean, sweet flavour. I’m happy eating them as they are, but if you want cookery inspiration, check out Luanne’s peach recipe ideas on EcoSalon.

It’s also berry season in the northern hemisphere. Apparently, it’s National Blueberry Month in the US – and who am I to argue? Deborah at Cafe Zupas shares some fun facts and a recipe for blueberry cobbler. Or you could try your hand at making jam – if you haven’t done it before, it’s easier than you think and a great way to preserve the berry bounty of summer. I’ve written a simple guide to jam making on EcoSalon.

Summer means ice cream, right? Actually, I overdid it on the comfort eating during the long two months I was separated from my husband, so I’m trying to swing the pendulum back the other way with some healthy living. But if anything were to tempt me to the dark side it would be this recipe for mocha chip gelato from Heather at The Scootabaker (and don’t you just love the picture in the header for her blog?).

It’s also the right time of year for cherries, though they are not quite as cheap and plentiful as berries or peaches. In another entry for the indulgence category, Rebecca at Ezra Pound Cake shares a recipe for cherry pie. I particularly like the fact that rather than going for the traditional pastry lattice roof, she’s done something a little different with this fab-sounding coconut-almond crunch topping.

There are sweet little Alphonso mangoes piled up high at my local grocer, for about $1.40 a throw. It’s mango season in London too (or at least it’s the season where mangoes are imported from India, which is as close as it gets). I love to eat them plain, with the juice running down my chin and arms, but I also love the sound of this mango pudding, yum cha style, from Not Quite Nigella.

Meat lovers will know that summer and autumn are the time for game meat. I was mightly impressed with this post on cooking hare three ways from Jonathan at Around Britain with a Paunch. (Incidentally, I’ve met Jonathan and there’s no sign of a paunch).

I’ve heard it said that it’s possible to catch a fish in winter but frankly I’m not convinced. Fishing is definitely a summer sport in my book. Lizzie from Hollow Legs recently went mackerel fishing in Cornwall and barbequed the haul to perfection.

Salad is another summer favourite and I particularly like the look of this chorizo and new potato salad from Julia at A Slice of Cherry Pie. Simplicity itself. She suggests pairing it with that classic English summertime drink, Pimm’s. I’ll skip the booze since I’m doing Dry July to raise money for charity (feel free to sponsor me!).

Of course, it’s not summer everywhere. In my hometown of Sydney, it’s the middle of winter and it’s actually pretty cold – the perfect time for Christmas dinner, in fact. Jules at Stone Soup has a post on Christmas in July. It might sound crazy to people in the northern hemisphere, but December in Australia is really hot and a hot roast dinner is usually the last thing anyone feels like eating. We tend to celebrate Christmas with picnics on the beach or backyard barbeques – and more king prawns are sold than turkey. It doesn’t mean we don’t appreciate a good roast turkey with all the trimmings, but July is a far better time for it.

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  1. Jonathan says:

    Glad you liked the Hare post. I’m working on my Paunch. Hopefully it will be enormous next time I see you!

    Nah! You’re far too cute as you are. I reckon if you keep up the running you’ll be just fine. The pizza the other day looked mighty good by the way. – Caitlin.