Nutritionist’s Pantry – Staying Local, Plus, Brussels Sprouts & Delicata Squash

Nutritionist’s Pantry – Staying Local, Plus, Brussels Sprouts & Delicata Squash

  • posted on: November 27, 2017
  • posted by: Robin Crowder
Share with friends Share
  • FacebookTwitter

Staying Local This Holiday Season with Dietetic Intern Madison Rivas

The holiday season is a wonderful time to gather together with loved ones around a table of bountiful food.  When we take time to slow down and be present with family and friends during the holidays, we can also set an intention to be mindful of the impact our food choices have on the livelihood of our communities and the environment. Consider offering some of these local and seasonal favorites to your communal table this holiday season.

Winter squash varieties such as butternut, acorn, delicata and hubbard are abundantly available this time of year in Washington. Local squash looks beautiful on the table prior to cooking, is nutrient-dense and can be used in both sweet and savory dishes. There are many ways to incorporate winter squash into your holiday meals. For example, you can use the flesh of squash to make a purée for a pie like you would a pumpkin, or use it to make a warming savory soup.

Greens such as kale, collard greens, and chard add vital nutrients and rich color to your holiday plate. Pair them with a nutty local cheese and mushrooms for a change of pace from the classic green bean casserole.

If you choose to have meat on your table, choose meats that are raised locally and sustainably. This helps support your local economy and protect natural resources. (We can tell you more about the positive role that raising meats can have in a sustainable food system the next time you visit.) You can find local meats from Skagit Valley Ranch and Jones Family Farms at the 21 Acres Farm Market.

Enjoying a meal with loved ones may mean miles of travel for you, but we can take simple steps to reduce the miles that our food has to travel to get to our plates. No matter where you end up during this holiday season, choosing local and sustainably produced foods can allow you to enjoy flavorful and fresh meals while helping your community and the environment thrive for generations to come.

Try balancing the strong flavor of Brussels sprouts with the mild sweetness of delicata squash with this spin on a traditional holiday recipe:

RECIPE: Maple Glazed Roasted Delicata Squash and Brussels Sprouts
Recipe adapted from Elise Bauer, Simply Recipes

1 1/2 pounds Brussels sprouts, halved
1 large delicata squash (about 1 1/4 pound), deseeded and cut into 1/2 inch half moons
3 shallots, peeled, cut lengthwise in half or thirds
1/2 cup hazelnuts, toasted, roughly chopped
3 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons sunflower or grape seed oil
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon salt

1. Preheat oven to 400 °F

2. Place the squash, Brussels sprouts, and shallots into a large bowl and toss with 2 tablespoons oil, 2 tablespoons of maple syrup, and 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar. Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt.

3. Spread vegetables on baking sheet and roast for 35 to 40 minutes, turning the vegetables over about halfway through. Squash should be tender and lightly browned. Brussels should be well browned.

4. Remove from the oven and place in a serving dish. Toss with remaining tablespoon of maple syrup and hazelnuts. Serve warm.