— By Camille DePutter
Fall feels like a romance, because every year my senses seem to re-awaken and remind me how much I love it.
Fall is very sensory. Leaves have colour and crunch. Seasonal dishes are packed with fragrant spice, like cinnamon and nutmeg, and bring long-familiar smells, like turkey roasting in the oven. There’s the brightness of squash and pumpkins, and the pleasant plumpness and weight of holding them in your hands. And then there’s that crispness in the air; though fall weather can be unpredictable, it’s at its best when you can enjoy the warm sun on your skin while simultaneously feeling the wake-up of a slight bite of coolness.
I love fall, so naturally I love Thanksgiving. And built right into Thanksgiving is giving thanks. So it makes sense to pause and feel some gratitude for this season.
Every year around our Thanksgiving table we say some things we’re thankful for. As always, food will be one of the things I take a moment to appreciate. This year even more than others.
A few months ago I started working at a humanitarian organization called Action Against Hunger. I work at the Canadian headquarters of this global NGO dedicated to the fight against malnutrition.
Learning about severe malnutrition and its impact has been quite powerful for me. Though I have been actively learning about various issues relating to food and agriculture for some time, I’ve now discovered just how much I didn’t know about malnutrition in the world – the lives it costs, and the devastation it causes to those who survive it.
However, I also didn’t know just how much is actively being done to solve this problem – to save lives, to improve the health and dignity of those at risk, and to prevent malnutrition through sustainable solutions.
Thus, I am grateful for the people who are working hard to end malnutrition and make life better for others. (This is a spectrum of people and includes the amazing chefs and restaurateurs who are joining Action Against Hunger in our Love Food Give Food campaign this month, starting World Food Day, October 16).
For me, being reminded of these realities is not about guilt. Rather, it is about appreciating and celebrating what we have, and doing what we can to help others.
This month from the Withrow Blogging team, we’ll give you more ways to indulge your delight for the season – time-tested recipes, inventive ideas, and insight into what happens with the farmers’ market as the season changes.
Meanwhile, consider this blog your permission to pause, enjoy, and appreciate the season – with every step, every sniff, and of course, every bite.