There are only twelve months in a year, of course, so it’s an unfortunate reality that I’m going to eventually run out of posts for “What’s in Season?”. For the time being, however, I’m happy to report that I still have a couple months left of produce content to cover. Maybe once “What’s in Season” is finished, I can start a new food-themed monthly series. What do you guys think?

yellow bananas
Photo by Juan Salamanca on Pexels.com

Bananas are one of the most delicious, easiest snacks I can think of to have on the go. I’m not really a big citrus person, so I appreciate bananas for having a sweet, almost creamy taste. Bananas are also super versatile, and the possibilities for cooking with them are endless- smoothies, pancakes, and of course, baked goods. I usually don’t have much of an appetite when I wake up, so at the very least, I can usually convince myself to have a banana. It’s not a bad breakfast option- in fact, bananas are loaded with vitamin C, potassium, and manganese (which is fantastic for your skin, by the way). Bananas also pack a ton of energy, making them perfect for a breakfast snack to ease you into the day. Like I said, however, they do make great desserts, so I’m going to include my favorite banana bread recipe at the bottom!


bell peppers blur chili close up
Photo by Kai Pilger on Pexels.com

Bell peppers are also in season in July, and though they certainly aren’t sweet like a banana, they’re still delicious. Lots of people love to eat their peppers hot or stuffed, but for me, I actually only like them cold (and preferably on a salad). There’s something about squishy, warm vegetables that kind of turns me off. Nonetheless, bell peppers are extremely healthy, and they pack a ton of antioxidants. They also help support healthy night vision, similarly to carrots, and they can even help to raise your iron levels! I sometimes struggle with my own iron consumption because I’m such a picky eater, so if that sounds like you, considering throwing some red peppers onto your next salad or pizza. 


two sliced melons and grapes
Photo by Daria Shevtsova on Pexels.com

Is it just me, or is cantaloupe severely underrated? I feel like not enough people are casually reaching for cantaloupe like they do with apples and oranges. Cantaloupe has a sweet, juicy taste and a soft consistency, and it’s also packed with nutrients. Cantaloupe contains a ton of carotene, which, yes, is the same thing that makes carrots orange. The vitamin A in carotene can help aid in healthy eyes, red blood cells, and even a healthy immune system. Because cantaloupe has so much water in it, it’s a perfect summertime snack to prevent yourself from becoming dehydrated. Cantaloupe is also safe to give your dogs in moderation, and I can say from personal experience that Duke approves of this healthy snack. (Side note, I love the feminine energy of this cantaloupe picture. Ugh. New lock screen?)


tomato lot
Photo by Julia on Pexels.com

Tomatoes are another one of those super versatile foods that I love to cook with and eat. I’m actually growing a tomato plant right now, bur admittedly, he isn’t looking too good. The interesting thing about tomato is that it’s technically a fruit, but usually prepared as a vegetable would be. In regards to health benefits, tomatoes are a good source of fiber, vitamin C, and potassium, and can even help to prevent some types of cancers. I’m really interested in trying shakshouka, which is a poached egg dish with tomato sauce and spices. I’ll put a link to that recipe at the bottom, so let me know if you’re going to try it as well!


pineapples
Photo by Chay A. on Pexels.com

I have a very complicated relationship with pineapple. Like I said, I’m not really a citrus person, and anything sour is a turn off. I do like pineapple on my pizza, which I realize is an unpopular opinion. Alas, pineapple is loaded with nutrients and disease-fighting antioxidants, so you don’t have to feel guilty about enjoying it! Pineapple can also speed your recovery after surgery or strenuous exercise, which is something I appreciate as a relatively athletic person. I also enjoy putting pineapple in a morning shake, because it wakes me up without tasting too sour or acidic. 


Image result for corn on the cob but instead of the corn bone

Corn is definitely one of my favorite vegetables, right up there with potatoes. Seriously, sweet corn makes the perfect side dish for anything. Corn can actually help aid with weight loss, despite the myth that it causes you to gain weight. I was reminded of my appreciation for corn after Jenna Marbles posted a video the other week making an excellent dish- “Corn on the cob, but instead of the corn bone, it’s a hot dog.” I will leave the link to that video at the bottom of this page, so that you may also bask in the glory of Jenna’s groundbreaking recipe and make it for yourself.


*Banana bread and Jenna’s recipe can be made vegan with substitutes!*

Banana bread: https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/20144/banana-banana-bread/

Shakshouka: https://www.loveandoliveoil.com/2015/10/shakshouka-poached-eggs-in-spicy-tomato-sauce.html

Corn on the cob, but instead of the corn bone, it’s a hot dog: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4VosRKPBGE8

Coming up next: I’m Pissed at YouTube

Image result for jenna marbles

I don’t remember exactly how old I was when YouTube became a regular thing. I was born in 1999, so by the time I hit fifth grade, the funniest videos on the market were The Trololo Guy, ASDF, Cactuar and Tonberry, and, of course, “Nyan Cat.” (Speaking of the latter, it’s been so long since I’ve seen that video, I originally spelled it as “Naan Cat.” Apparently, he is now a beautiful entity of Southeast Asian bread, soaring through the sky.) As much as I and many others loved these channels and cherished them at the time, they didn’t exactly age well.  And that’s not to say they weren’t funny- they were. At the time.

As my generation matured and adapted to the changing climate of our culture, our senses of humor started to seemingly become less slapstick and more sociological. As young people who were struggling to find our own identities, we turned our attention away from animated comedy and more towards a realistic perspective. This is where Jenna Marbles comes onto the scene. She’s funny not because she’s fabricating content, she’s funny because she’s making humor of very real and relatable situations. She was one of the first (if not the first) who taught me that “real life” can be funny. Adulting is funny. Growing up and going through the motions, even in the most ordinary events, could be beautiful and entertaining. And, of course, also extremely funny.

The fascinating thing about Jenna Marbles is her relevance and durability through the shift from the 2000s to the 2010s. With over eighteen million subscribers, Jenna has proven herself to be relevant and entertaining for both young and old generations. In fact, I have friends in my thirties who still tune into Jenna’s videos every week. It’s an unfortunate reality that many early YouTubers were not able to survive a growing and changing demographic, but somehow, Jenna was able to grow with us. She wasn’t the same spray-tanned, sassy, beach blonde we remembered from our childhoods- she became something better: a craft-loving, thirty-something year-old dog mom who enjoyed incorporating silliness into every possible scenario. And what could be better than that?

My personal favorite aspect of Jenna’s channel is the unpredictable nature of her content. She puts enthusiasm and love into every video she makes. She doesn’t care about her views and likes; her biggest priority is delivering content that is unique, simple, and true to her actual life. Jenna doesn’t need to win our affections by clickbaiting us and dramatizing every aspect of her life; her content is interesting because it’s authentic and pure.

Jenna has also proven herself to be extremely humble and down-to-earth. When she talks to the camera one-on-one, it almost doesn’t even feel like a YouTube video anymore. It feels more like sitting down with an old friend and catching up, laughing, relating to each other, and appreciating each other. Jenna is not a woman who capitalizes on her large fan base; she treats us all as if we were her friends, and supports us as much as we continue to support her. It’s truly a beautiful relationship to watch every week. Her roverall content makes her viewers feel like they are part of the family themselves. We share inside jokes with Jenna like we would with any other friend, and the jokes never get old (especially the jokes pertaining to Kermit being a whiny middle child, and Marble acting like a dead dog.)

In case you’re unfamiliar with the term, zeitgeist refers to “the spirit of the times.” In my opinion, Jenna Marbles is the spirit of our time. She doesn’t spend her money on lamborghinis and lavish luxuries (though there’s nothing wrong with that, either.) She hasn’t let her fame turn her into an ignorant, obnoxious money-hungry influencer. Through all of her success and wealth, Jenna’s morals and overall content haven’t broken down or changed. She’s still the same light-hearted, happy young woman we loved and grew up with as kids, and continues to teach us through her content that it’s okay to laugh, relax, and enjoy the simple things in life.  

Jenna’s channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/JennaMarbles

Picture source: LiveKindly

Coming up next: My Real Vintage Collection