Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Farm-to-fork ideas - and a little plea

Fresh tomatoes are ripe in late summer and early fall. Photographs by Lori Korleski Richardson.
A former Sacramento Bee co-worker, Chris Macias, has a nice long piece in today's Bee discussing ways to improve the Farm-to-Fork Festival that drew more than 25,000 to the event in late September. (For those into planning ahead, a wine component of the event is tentatively set for Sept. 18, and the festival and gala dinner for Sept 27 and 28, respectively.)

Fresh basil is available at the same
time as tomatoes.
The ideas and suggestions are good, but as far as farm-to-fork goes, I'd be happy if every restaurant would take a pledge not to use the same hothouse or picked green for shipping then force "ripened" tomatoes (the only ones available for 9 months out of the year) during the duration of tomato season. Not every restaurant can make it using all local produce, but just using the tomatoes that one's area is known for during the short window they are available would be a start.

And consumers, stop ordering salads that have tomatoes on them in out-of-season months. If there's no demand, you will find out what raw tomatoes really taste like and enjoy them fresh only in season - and restaurants can move on to making salads featuring other tasty, in-season ingredients.

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