WELL SEASONED

The Well Seasoned love affair starts with food: very simply, we believe that food tastes best when it is grown in the right place at the right time.  

 

It's not that we don't enjoy food from overseas - you would be hard pushed to prize a steamed pork bun out of our hands - but for too long the great British public has been fed a diet of tasteless tomatoes and anaemic apples simply because they can be imported cheaply all year round.

 

In times gone by our lives would have been intimately and inextricably intertwined with the annual cycle of the seasons. We would have known when to harvest crops for the best yield, which fruits tasted sweetest each month and which animals or fish would provide us with the richest meat.

 

Live the seasonal life

Innovations like fridge freezers, processing techniques and a globalised food market have changed all of that. Seasonality has largely slipped from our collective consciousness and our eating habits have become almost entirely disconnected from the cycle.

 

Should we care? It is easy to accuse the seasonal foodie of being stuck in the past - of failing to embrace change. Many of the advances we have made in agriculture have, of course, done wonders for our world. For most people, especially those of us lucky enough to live in Britain, food is cheaper and more accessible than it has been at any time in the past.

 

And yet, if you buy food that is imported from thousands of miles away or artificially grown at the wrong time of year, you are almost certain to be making a sacrifice in terms of taste, cost, nutrition and environmental impact.

 

We don't want you thinking we are evangelical foodie lunatics. If you're desperate for the taste of green beans in December or peaches in February then that should be your choice. But, for seasonal food fans there is no sense of sacrifice: by eating with the seasons we have the excitement of rediscovering delicious flavours and ingredients every month of the year.

 

The seasonal cycle brings a bounty of ingredients to our tables, all bursting with truly fresh, natural flavour, none of which has travelled half way round the planet. We can eagerly await the first mackerel of Summer, we can be tantalised by the slow ripening of the Autumn apple and we can adore the comforting sweetness of Winter chestnuts. We can reject the September strawberry in favour of the underrated raspberry. We can refuse to eat plain plums in May and instead enjoy tart and tangy gooseberries. And as for Peruvian asparagus in August. Well, quite frankly, you can stick that in your pan pipes.

Britain's farmers and growers produce great-tasting food each and every season; they deserve to be championed and their produce deserves to be eaten.

 

Importantly, we're not just interested in our food. Our history is littered with pagan, celtic, religious and secular events that have evolved and continue to evolve using and celebrating the best of whatever nature throws at us (or dodging the worst of it!). This should be no surprise as Britain is one of the most seasonally affected countries in the world and everything we do as a nation, be it wrapping up warm to watch the football on a cold Winter's day or getting unexpectedly soaked to the skin in the middle of an April afternoon, is determined by the seasons.  

 

We're celebrating Britain's seasonal diversity and you're invited to the party.

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