Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Big ups to Mother Nature....it's cherry season!!

How excited am I? Cherry season is so short. Maybe that's one reason I appreciate them so much.

Since moving to Italy I've been able to eat more in tune with the seasons.

You would think this is common sense. Michelle Obama planted a garden at the White House. Sounds petty uncontroversial. But no... apparently growing local foods in season is ELITIST. Really? How about our grandparents who used to grow veggies? The woman can't win.

I saw the story on Jezebel. This part cracked me up. I get that's homeslice's job but come on.

Some people are even taking issue with Michelle's decision to emphasize local food. Xavier Equihua of the Chilean Exporters Association and the Chilean Avocado Committee says local food is "a charming idea and everything, but it's not practical," because local food is seasonal. He asks, "what happens if you want some grapes during the month of December? What are you going to do? Not eat grapes?" Uh, yeah? I like grapes as much as the next person, but they are not essential for survival, and while some transportation of food will always be necessary, it would do us a lot of good if we could return to a more seasonal way of eating. And really, how would Michelle, go about growing a garden that was not local? Outsource it to India? Water her avocado plants in Chile via Skype?

As wrote before my dad used to grow tomatoes along with other some other veggies. They were delicious. I wonder if the reason so many Americans hate veggies is because the ones they buy from the supermarket taste like crap. I get it. Eating a supermarket tomato in New York City during the winter is not fun. They taste like cardboard. Eating one from your garden or from Sicily that was picked maybe a day or two ago as opposed to a week ago/then refrigerated makes a big difference.

Now that summer is approaching I'm starting to see plums and melons at the market. What are your favorite summer fruits?


Lucia said...

I love Cherries, Peaches, Watermellon, Prickly Pears and Nectarines.

Lucia said...

oops watermelon

Caro said...

I'm with you on the cherry season! I actually like the way you can't get much stuff out of season in Italy, I look forward to autumn for my first pumpkin risotto of the year, and there's nothing better than piping hot chestnuts in the depths of winter. I think we appreciate stuff more when it's not so readily available.

And yeah, fruit and veg in season tastes SO much better...

Lilacspecs said...

Berries! Strawberries, raspberries, blackberries.
I love cherries too but I'm allergic so when I do eat them my mouth and throat itch.
Still, I'll make the sacrifice every so often :)

erin :: the olive notes said...

I LOVE seasonal eating (and cherries :) ) ...and to answer that guy's question, "Yes, you're right. I just WON'T eat grapes in December".

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

lucia - I've never had prickly pears. I wonder what they taste like.

caro - pumpkin risotto sounds so good.

lilacspecs - I think I have a slight allergy to cherries as well. My throat gets a little itchy and so do my ears. I still eat them though. ha

erin - really. I get that as a lobbyist for exporters he has to spin the party line but I think his mentality is a big problem in the States. We can't have everything all the time.

Ciao Chow Linda said...

Re:Michelle Obama. you're right she can't win for trying. people criticize her as elitist, but then when they put in the vegetable garden, she got criticized for doing something so "common" to the white house property. just a lot of sour losers.

J.Doe said...

I would expect someone from a the Chliean Exporters Association to be against eating fruits in season. It's his job on the line!
I don't like the plums , peaches, grapes and watermelon out of season. I prefer to eat them in the summer but I am happy that they exist in the supermarket out of season - even if they don't taste nearly as good

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

ccl - I didn't hear that. Wow. Planting a garden is "common"?

j.doe - ha. So true it is his job. His "OMG what if you couldn't eat grapes in December" tickled me.

Gibber said...

Sadly I developed an allergy to raw cherries. Eat them and my mouth blows up and gets all itchy. :( SO SAD as I lurve them.

A nice, juicy, sweet cantelope might be the best thing God ever created (besides mom and dad...and Clive Owen)

SDG said...

Glad you mentioned seasonal eating. It's something I've been pondering for quite some time. Those cherries look fab. Love them.

Cherrye at My Bella Vita said...

You won't believe this, but I think "Cherrye" has developed an allergy to cherries. I am so bummed. I've been eating em like crazy-like I always do when they are in season and I'm guessing that is why my lips are cherry red and puffy.

:-( SO SAD...

Jen of A2eatwrite said...

Cherries, plums and blueberries.

And tomatoes, if you count them as fruits. I'm so excited because we have at least some hydroponic tomatoes at our farmers market and they're delicious. Our cherry season is a bit later - Michigan is one of the largest cherry producers in the U.S. so we are lucky to have wonderful cherries when they're in season. Right now it's tons of rhubarb and strawberries.

Lola said...

strawberries, melon, apricots, peaches, raspberries, watermelon, tomatoes (yeah, yeah), cherries...

SEASONAL! I don't need grapes in December, sir.

And I applaud Michelle's idea.

Ciao amica mia

Jessica said...

Oh man, we've been gobbling up bags full of cherries in the office lately. I'm so happy they're in season. Good lord, only in America is seasonal food plucked straight from the earth "elitist" I guess that means Italians and pretty damn elitist considering everyone grows up from birth knowing what food is in season when. And I agree...I didn't realize how much supermarket produce tastes horrible until moving here.

Kataroma said...

Being able to get fruit and veg only when it's in season is one of the things I really like about Italy. Also our local market - now that my back's better I have to go over there and get some cherries!

I read an American parenting message board and the American parents were talking about giving their babies things like homemade pureed plums and cantaloupe back in January. It was funny to me after being here for quite a while as January definitely ain't cantaloupe or plum season.

Kim B. said...

Love Jessica's comment

Good lord, only in America is seasonal food plucked straight from the earth "elitist"

How true!!!!! I mean, do these people even realize how ridiculous they sound? And yes, Mr. Chilean grape guy, in days gone by, you did NOT eat grapes in December. Duh.

Thanks to David Lebovitz I discovered Reine Claude plums here last summer and am eagerly awaiting their arrival this year! I wouldn't say they're necessarily my favorite, but a fun new favorite!

I miss heading out into the country. When I lived here before and had my car (not to mention a valid French driver's license), many spring and summer weekends found me in Chablis -- and Sunday at the farmers' market, buying bags of cherries yum yum yum. I haven't had a single one this summer because it doesn't seem the same to buy them in the supermarché. Dumb I know.

What's up with everyone being allergic now?!

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

gibber - add Javier Bardem to zee list.

sdg - I need to go to the market and get some more. They are fab.

cherrye - say it isn't so. poverina. :(

jen - you know how I feel about Rhubarb. I wonder if I could grow it here. You know, in the garden of the house I don't have.

lola - I didn't eat a single grape all winter and yet somehow I survived. ha

jessica - really, like my maternal grandmother who lived in a small village on a small island would be elitist because had a garden. Some folks are tripping.

kataroma - sorry to hear about your back. glad you're on the mend. You have a great market in your area. I have to get back up there. Plums in January? I can't imagine that they taste good. They have to travel to far from South America, which means they're picked too early.

kimb - I don't know what's going on with the allergies. I don't remember having a cherry one growing up. Of maybe I did and just ignored it. I love David's blog. Someday I'll return to Paris for a long weekend or something. I haven't been there since the late 80s.

Moscerina said...

My favorite seasonal and hard to find fruit of all time is the lovely nespula. Once I waited 5 years to have one. So worth it.

Cherries are my second favorite. Last week had expensive but delicious Spanish cherries (am I a traitor since I didn't go local?). These were better than any cherry I have ever had-- be on the look out for cherry juice. Hard to find and seasonal.

glamah16 said...

I am writing an article right now on stone fruits. Always love them, Cherrries are crazy expensive but I love them for baking. The prices have started to dip a bit though. And Peaches! Dont get started on peaches!

Petulia said...

So excited about cherries, I have been eating them every day..today I am having my first watermelon . Cannot wait, I have an obsession with watermelon!

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

moscerina - I don't even know what that is. You'll have to school me. Well Spain is very close. ha. I love cherry juice too and you're right it's hard to find.

glamah - cherries here are pretty cheap compared to what I paid in the States. I feel you on the peaches.

petulia - I saw some watermelons at the market the other day. How I love summer fruits!