What’s in Season
In fields, backyards and farmers’ markets around the Island, signs of summer are all around. With lots of warm sunshine in the forecast, Prince Edward Island truly transforms into Canada’s Food Island in the summertime. Make good use of the fresh, vibrant new vegetables and fruits available in July across PEI.
The elderberry bush is a berry tree that’s part of the honeysuckle family, found in backyards and creeksides all over PEI. Clusters of tiny white edible blossoms appear in July and are a wonderful treat. The perfumed blossoms can be steeped in water or alcohols to made flavorful infusions, or added to baking or jams for some added aromatics.
Strawberries & Raspberries
Both strawberries and raspberries are part of the rose family; despite their name, neither one is technically a berry! Both are at their peak in July, with strawberries available in u-picks in the first 2 weeks in July. Raspberries can be found in u-picks and along trail-sides across PEI in late July. Both are fantastic eaten as-is, but can also made into preserves, baking and cocktails.
Lettuce & Greens
Sunshine and warm weather means green sprouts galore! While beets and turnips may not be ready for eating yet, their greens are ready to harvest. Cook these hearty greens with a little butter and garlic for a taste of summer. Lettuces are also in their prime this time of year, so look for romaine, leaf lettuce, arugula and bibb for a great flavourful salad!
Fresh garden peas are a treat that really has no equal. Although they can be a bit of work to shell, it’s well worth the time when you consider how totally delicious the end product will be. Look for peas in the pod that are bright green and not too “full” looking. They are best shelled and cooked for just a couple of minutes with a little butter and salt. Snow or snap peas are also in season in July. They are great in a quick sauté or even eaten raw in a salad or with your favorite dip.
Fresh herbs love the sunshine, and they are at their peak in July, after they have a chance to grow but before they bloom. Look for herbs that are bright green with firm, crisp stems and shiny leaves. While most herbs are best eaten fresh in their peak, some can be dried for later use. Rosemary, thyme, oregano and lavender are still great after dehydration. Other more tender herbs like basil, parsley and cilantro are best served fresh. Try them in salads, or as a garnish for your favorite summer foods! Ever tried a mojito made with fresh mint? No time like the present!