How many of us have heard stories passed down from generation to generation? The best stories include special family recipes, shared by a relative with smiles and sometimes in secret with a select group of family members.
These stories and recipes add a special touch to our dinner tables all year, and particularly during this time of year. Holidays include traditional foods and new, exciting dishes as part of the fun of the season for many of us. When we think about the family relevance and cultural significance of some of these foods, thoughts of the farmers and the stories of ingredients may also come to mind.
We may think of some of these special, “local” foods as being grown by a farmer within our community, state, or region. Depending on the food or dish, we may even expand that definition to talk about where that food or dish originally came from. Due to the popularity of local foods, it may be surprising to note that there actually isn’t a definition of local that is widely or generally accepted by all.
Regardless of how we define local food for ourselves, farmers are local wherever we live and foods are typically grown where it makes the most sense to do so. For example, you’d probably not expect bananas or pineapples to be grown in a cold climate. Here are four reasons why and how we can celebrate and enjoy local food and support the farmers who grow it year-round:
- Farmers are our neighbors. Get to know what is grown in your state or region.
- Eating in season is a great way to add flavor and interest easily within your budget.
- Learn how to store seasonal favorites all year.
- Spend some time in the kitchen to learn how to select, store, and prepare local foods that may be new to you but readily available in your hometown store.