The slow living spring kitchen is an uplifting place to be. The start of fresh garden produce has finally started to arrive for the year.
You can sense the underlying feeling of hope, that spring carries with it, as soon as you walk in. It permeates your being. And it feels GOOD!
As much as I love to spend long, cozy days in my kitchen, throughout the fall and winter seasons, I embrace this season’s kitchen as well.
I do, however, spend less time in the kitchen at this time of year. Most of the meals I make are quick, easy, and light. I prefer to take advantage of the opportunity to be outside for longer periods of time, rather than spend my time indoors cooking.
And I try to kickstart the summer season at this time by grilling outdoors whenever I can. It’s nice to hang outside on warm evenings and grill up some of my favs.
INVITE SPRING INTO YOUR KITCHEN
The slow living spring kitchen won’t be able to bring itself into the new season. You’re going to have to help it along.
No worries though, that’s easy enough to do. It’s a great time to change out the towels and dishrags for new, brightly colored pieces.
This simple step can convert the atmosphere more than you would think. And along with a few spring friendly scented candles, you’ll see a big difference in the mood of your kitchen right away.
If you’re able to snag a pot of daffodils, hyacinths, or lilys and make a spot for them on the counter, that’s a great addition as well.
Then all you have to do to make the transition complete is open the windows and let the spring come on in.
It’s also nice to put on some upbeat music and make yourself a refreshing pitcher of citrus water to enjoy while you work.
Bam! The spring kitchen is born. Just like that!
TRY NEW RECIPES IN YOUR SLOW LIVING SPRING KITCHEN
Trying new recipes in the kitchen is fun no matter what time of year it is. This time of year it is especially nice to indulge in the fresh early spring veggies that begin to become available.
Dreams of the return of farmers markets are beginning to stir, even though they’re not quite here yet.
However the stores will start carrying a wider variety of produce. And, the quality of what’s available will show big strides of improvement as well.
So, take what you can get, right?!?! I know I’ll take it. And I’ll keep my eyes open wide for farmers selling the first of their wares for the season. Particularly garden fresh lettuce, tasty early radishes, and spring peas. YUMMY!
While you’re waiting for the real goods to show themselves for sale, or present themselves in your own garden … gather a few new recipes to give a try this season.
Look for dishes that sport fresh spring ingredients. Or go with a few refreshing beverage recipes, work on upping your salad dressing game, or give a few new smoothie recipes a try.
MEALS TO COOK IN YOUR SLOW LIVING SPRING KITCHEN
Interestingly enough, our energy output in this season increases while our appetite decreases. And we find ourselves eating much lighter meals.
The work of the slow living spring kitchen is quick and easy. There is little to no food preservation going on. And we want to spend less time cooking meals and more time outdoors enjoying the warmth of the sunshine.
So we’re experiencing more movement. Yet, we find ourselves craving fresh salads and more often indulging in simple quick meals like stir frys, seafood, and fritattas.
And even when we do make heartier dishes, we tend to use lighter ingredients.
This is the time to go heavy on the fruits and veggies, and lighter on comfort food. I know I’m breaking out the smoothie routine this week and I can’t wait.
I released a FREE Spring Recipes Cookbook earlier this week if you’re interested in snagging a copy of that to help inspire you to create a few new spring dishes in your kitchen this year.
FOOD TO PREP EVERY WEEK IN YOUR SLOW LIVING SPRING KITCHEN
Food prep in the slow living spring kitchen is much quicker and easier to do than the prep work of the fall and winter seasons.
If you step into the kitchen one afternoon a week and put in an hour or two, you can get yourself set up for convenient healthy meals all week long without a problem.
Then I whip together a few salad dressings and a meat marinade or two to use all week as well.
You can make your marinades and get your meat soaking in them while your in the kitchen prepping, and then it’s ready to cook later in the week. Hopefully, on the grill outdoors.
If it’s going to be more than a couple of days before you cook the meat, simply freeze it right in the marinade. When you thaw it out to cook, it will be perfectly flavored.
Finally, cut up some veggies so that they’re prepped and ready to go for stir frys or salads. And cut up some fruit to have on hand for smoothies.
That’s all there is to it … weekly prep is done in no time and you’re eating healthier meals all week!
MAKE THE KITCHEN A SOCIAL AFFAIR
The kitchen at any time of year is a great place to gather, and the slow living spring kitchen, as with every other season, has it’s own special charm for this activity.
The amount of effort that is needed to make this a relaxing place to hang out with friends is pretty minimal, as the food prep is so simple and quick.
Focus on light, easy, dishes that don’t require much cooking, like the ones I’ve mentioned above in the section on meals to cook in the kitchen during this season.
Or, maybe better yet, put together a tapas party and a few spring friendly beverages and call it a night.
If you want to get together with friends and family to spend some time prepping, preserving, or creating in the kitchen one evening, you can keep that easy too.
Prep things like dressings, condiments, and marinades. Quick pickle a few spring vegetables, or spend an evening experimenting with light refreshing beverages.
Fun will be had by all, and everyone will go home with some great goodies for their own kitchens.
MAKE HEALTHY WARM SEASON DESSERTS
In the post I put out on the blog about the slow living winter kitchen, I talked about keeping desserts during that season healthier, rather than indulging too much in full on sugary treats.
And this is always the way to go, obviously right?!?! But during the spring season I find myself gravitating toward even lighter options for dessert.
Often, a few slices of melon, a little dish of berries, or a sweet, juicy plum is enough to satisfy that sweet tooth now that warmer weather is here.
It’s also nice to keep sliced frozen bananas on hand to whip up some nice cream in the evening. If you aren’t familiar with nice cream there are recipes all over the great big interweb for it and it’s super easy to make.
Alternatively, there is one sugary indulgence that I recommend you treat yourself to at least once this season. And that is dairy fresh ice cream. ‘Tis the season for this treat and it’s top notch, so go for it!
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