With Thanksgiving right around the corner and big grocery shopping days coming up, now is the perfect time to keep our local food sources in mind!
Yes, the glory of summer is over, the hustle and bustle at the Farmers Market has calmed to a quiet shuffle, but there are still so many treats to be found and so many smiles to share with your fellow community members and hard working farmers.
I mean really, if Thanksgiving isn’t about family, friends and community, then I’m not sure what the point of it is 😉
Now, you might be asking yourself, “What’s in season?” but the answer is, “Plenty!”
Depending on where you live, how cold it already is, and how well your farmers have planned and stored their crops, I bet you can purchase (at the very least) one or two items on your shopping list from a local source!
And here’s the thing, while a fully locally sourced meal would be ideal, every little step we take towards intentionally sourcing foods and products locally does count! Locally inspired meals: Whether it’s the herbs you purchase, the eggs you bake with, the wine you serve or the main course…it all counts!
Now, I thought I’d share with you all a few of my new favorite locally inspired recipes and ideas to get your wheels turning a bit!
Turkey and/or Ham – The biggest part of a Thanksgiving meal, purchasing your turkey or ham from a local source can not have a huge impact on your local economy and the environment, but it can also awaken you to the most delicious meats you’ve ever had in your life! Once I went local with our annual turkey, I never went back. There really is nothing like it.
- Is Heritage Turkey Worth It? ::: Northwest Edible Life
Potatoes – A staple of most meals, potatoes are easy to find at your local Farmer’s Market and/or Co-op and while Russets and Yams are good, there are so many other varieties out there to try that you won’t find at your big box stores.
- Spiral Sweet Potatoes with Almonds and Sage ::: Five Little Homesteaders
- Warm Roasted Sweet Potato Salad ::: The Cozy Apron
- Smashed Potatoes ::: Five Little Homesteaders
- Butter Roasted Potatoes with Thyme ::: The Free Range life
Veggies, Soups & Salads – No matter where you live, someone is growing something either in the ground or in a greenhouse that you can use as your veggies. Whether you simply purchase your greens locally or you’re lucky enough to find someone who’s stored a few apples, beets or pears, every local bite counts.
- Spinach, Apple, and Bacon Salad ::: Reformation Acres
- Squash Millet Bake ::: Homespun Seasonal Living
- Beet and Apple Salad ::: The Browning Homestead
- Honey Glazed Carrots ::: We Got Real
- Thyme Roasted Radishes ::: Montana Homesteader
- Butternut Squash Pear Soup ::: Simply Living Simply
Biscuits – While local flours can be challenging to purchase in many areas, it’s worth the try. if all else fails, make some biscuits with local herbs and/or local buttermilk! I cannot say it often enough, these biscuits are absolutely divine!
- Herbed Buttermilk Biscuits ::: Ever Growing Farm
Desserts – Luckily, this time of year there is an abundance of squash and pumpkins! Go crazy, make your own puree and fill that pie crust yourself! Really, what are you waiting for?
- Homemade Pumpkin Pie/Puree Filling ::: This Organic Life
- Wilderness Pumpkin Skillet Cake ::: Trayer Wilderness
Condiments & Sauces
- Plummy Lavender Balsamic Sauce ::: The Faulk Farmstead
- Sweet Potato Banana Butter ::: Ever Growing Farm
- Cranberry Sauce ::: Epicurious
Locked into a rut with the “traditional” (super convenient) boxed meals? Homemade Holiday: Supermarket Products You Can Make at Home will inspire you to think outside the box 🙂
For more locally inspired meals, check out Wayward Spark’s locally inspired Farmer’s Market Pinterest Board. It is, hands down, my favorite board out there.
Also, don’t forget your local beers, wines and infusions! If nothing else, there’s always local alcohol to serve to your guests 😉
- Apple & Cinnamon Infused Whiskey ::: Ever Growing Farm
Waste Not, Want Not – Don’t forget to save back the bones from your turkey and any trimmings from veggies you prepared to make into a delicious (and nutritious) stock!
- The Original Black Friday Deal – Free Turkey Stock ::: Whistle Pig Hollow
Locally inspired? I sure hope so! Now, go forth, buy local, and have a magnificent holiday!