It’s not uncommon that during winter we sometimes get into that state of losing motivation, and that’s no different in the kitchen. But the colder months, especially when it’s grey and rainy outside, are also a perfect opportunity to spend time cooking up a storm, trying out new nourishing meals to warm your body and soul from the inside out!
I’ve put together some of my top tips for winter meal inspiration, which keep me motivated and inspired to stay healthy and nourished:
1. Hit up your local farmers market
There are so many benefits to eating seasonally, from greater variety, fresher and more nutrient-dense produce to lower costs both for yourself and for the planet. I absolutely love visiting my local farmers markets and filling up my basket with fresh, local and seasonal produce to cook with.
Find out which markets are on in your area to do your weekly produce haul, and bonus pints if you challenge yourself to trying one seasonal fruit or vegetable you’ve never tried before each week!
2. Adapt your cooking
When the weather is colder, our bodies often prefer more warming, cooked meals as opposed the abundance of raw salads and fresh fruit we generally crave during summer. So swaps those smoothie bowls and salads for hearty, warming porridge bowls with stewed fruit, lentil soups and veggie-packed stews.
There are so many benefits to adjusting your eating-style to the seasons, from improved digestion, stronger immunity and greater vitality, which have long been taught by Traditional Chinese and Ayurvedic medicine. So not only do these wholesome and hearty dishes taste amazing and keep you warm from the inside, but your body will thank you!
3. Find a handful of new recipes to try
Now is the perfect time to find some new and exciting recipes to try out! Have a scroll through some of your favourite recipe blogs (if you’re unsure, Pinterest is always a great place to start!) or scan your bookshelf for your old favourite recipe books. You can even make a trip to your local library and borrow some new and exciting cookbooks to experiment with!
Make use of all those different herbs and spices, try out new flavour combinations and different cuisines. How about an Indian veggie curry, homemade pasta with a slow-cooked tomato sauce or Greek-style stuffed capsicums? Trying out new recipes is such a great way to prevent boredom around food, plus you get to master some new skills in the process and enjoy delicious home-cooked food at the end!
4. Hold a potluck with friends
Get together with friends and ask everyone to bring a home-cooked dish to share! This is such a great way to catch up with friends and stay social and connected during winter, as well as to try out new dishes you might not usually cook yourself. You’ll find new cooking inspiration and exchange recipes with friends.
A potluck dinner is also a great time to impress your friends from the new recipe you just learnt to cook from our last point! And we all know that good food tastes even better when it’s enjoyed with great people.