Healthy Summer Eats with Jennifer Nicol
Now that we are experiencing some beautiful summer weather, my mind is on ice cream, patio beers and burgers! And, after that stint of indulgence all I want to do is nap. Summer can be seen as a time of indulgence, or it can be seen as an opportunity to consume fresh whole foods – and there are lots of great in-season choices, that will go a long way to helping you feel your best.
In June the fruits we have in season in Ontario are Apples, cherries, rhubarb, and strawberries. Vegetables in season include asparagus, beans, bok choy, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, cucumber, beans, lettuce, cooking onions, green onions, green peas, snow peas, mushrooms, greenhouse peppers, potatoes, radicchio, radishes, rutabaga, spinach, sprouts, summer squash, sweet potato, and greenhouse tomatoes!
Why should we eat in season?
Eating seasonally is a great way to reduce your impact on the environment as eating foods in season typically means that you are consuming foods that are relatively local. That way you will be cutting down on food transportation emissions, and energy that is needed to refrigerate and store foods for their journey.
These foods are also being grown in optimal conditions for their propagation! This means that the crops will require fewer pesticides, preservatives and other chemicals to help them grow and look appealing to consumers. The crops are typically cheaper for farmers to produce, and cheaper for us to buy!
Soon you’ll find that eating seasonally allows you to get the most flavour and nutrition from your food and you will find a stronger connection to what you put in your body.
Jennifer Nicol is one of our instructors at Yoga Tree and has also been trained at the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition. As a Registered Holistic Nutritionist, she has a wealth of knowledge regarding healthy eating options. Just recently she held a workshop that looked at plant-based eating. Here is one of her plant-based recipes that utilizes some seasonal ingredients!
Roasted Butternut Apple Cauliflower Soup
- 1 peeled and cubed summer squash
- 1 cubed organic apple
- 1 small onion cut into quarters
- 1/8 head of cauliflower into large pieces
- 4 or 5 whole garlic cloves chopped coarse
- 500ml vegetarian broth or bouillon
- coconut oil
- cayenne pepper
- salt and pepper
Toss squash and apple in a bowl with 2 tablespoons of room temperature or liquid coconut oil, garlic, sea salt or himalayan salt and black pepper. Bake at 350 for 40 – 45 minutes. Remove and let cool for 15 minutes.
In a blender pulse all ingredients + 500ml vegetable broth until smooth like a thick puree texture.
To serve, pour blended ingredients into a saucepan, add 1/2 tablespoon of coconut oil and season with cayenne, sea salt or Himalayan salt, and black pepper to taste.