Strawberry season at our house is over, but, fortunately, back when it was in full swing in late June,  our garden’s strawberry plants did pretty well this year and Jasper and I made lots of trips to Spencer’s to stock up too. What Jasper didn’t eat right then (seriously, there for awhile, I thought he might actually get sick from eating so many strawberries), I froze for later. I used some last week to make the best strawberry ice cream ever. You need to make this stuff – and soon.

You know how the local in-season strawberries taste like a totally difference fruit than the stuff you get at the grocery store with the hollow, white tasteless insides? It turns out that those strawberries aren’t only not as tasty, but they aren’t as good for us either. New research indicates that many of our common fruits and vegetables are less healthy for us today than they were a few decades ago.

This is obviously not an excuse to eat less vegetables, but it’s great motivation to

1) grow your own heirloom and non-hybrid varieties, preferably from a local source like Nature’s Crossroads based in Bloomington

and

2) buy from local farmers who grow seasonal produce, especially if they grow heirloom varieties. Our favorite family activity these days is to ride our bikes into one of the local farmer’s markets and find some strange new variety of vegetable that we haven’t tried yet. We ask the farmer how she grew it and why, how best to prepare it and chat about whatever else comes to mind. You definitely can’t get that kind of experience from buying out-of-season strawberries shipped from California at Kroger!

Growing your own heirloom and non-hybrid varieties and supporting others who do as well will ensure that Jasper and other kids like him will be eating the healthiest possible fruits and vegetables when they’re old and gray.

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