eating well in the North
A common saying around here is “it’s so hard to eat well in the North!”
It is. That’s a fact. It’s also hard getting up in the mornings. It’s hard to remember to send a gift for Mother’s Day 3 weeks in advance. It’s hard to bring up children (apparently). My point being, it’s not a legitimate excuse to stop trying.
It might mean a little more research, a little more planning, a little more creativity.
We get stuck in the rut of fresh is best. To help you understand life in the North, these are our options for fresh fruit/vegetables:
1) Tomatoes, picked at the prime, spend a week traveling from South America and waiting on the tarmac in Yellowknife, arriving over-ripe, squished and starting to rot (with signs of freezer burn having passed through -30˚C outside).
2) Tomatoes, picked green before the nutrients have developed, arrive here firm and just starting to redden, but lacking nutritional value and, most unfortunately, flavour.
Conclusion: the best option for us in regards to fruits and vegetables, is frozen. Canned (not in syrup) is great. And picked straight from your garden is a luxury. A luxury that, come summer, is totally possible.
Oh, you don’t know how to grow plants? No worries! Just like planting babies, knowledge is overrated – just plant the seeds and miraculously it does it’s thing.
I am adamant that there is never, and never will be, an excuse for Kraft Dinner, commercial freezer meals or processed box-food. Real food is always available. It might be more pricey. It might be in a form different to what you are used to. It might require a little more preparation. It’s difficult, but not excusable.
You know you live in the North when onion is considered a nutritious vegetable.
Quick dinner when no fresh vegetables exist
Recipe from my head
Defrost a chicken breast. Rub with a dab of mustard and some sprigs of dried rosemary. Place breast on lightly oiled oven tray, cover with foil and bake in hot oven until cooked through, about 20 minutes. Remove foil half way through to allow the top to colour. Chop one red onion and a kumara (sweet potato) or pumpkin (squash) and toss 2 unpeeled cloves of garlic, a dash of olive oil and more rosemary. Bake until soft. Squeeze the garlic into a dish of yogurt along with some fresh picked herbs. Season well and serve over the roast vegetables. I’d already had a bunch of greens at lunch but frozen broccoli dropped briefly into boiling water until bright green and hot, would perfectly complete this.