What's in season: February
Purple sprouting broccoli
This brassica looks just like its name. Leafier than calabrese broccoli, its long, thin stems are tender and flavoursome, and best treated like cauliflower when it comes to cooking.
Renowned as an aphrodisiac, the salty, slippery flesh of the oyster is considered a delicacy. Though purists will insist on eating their oyster raw - perhaps with a dash of lemon juice or vinegar - they can also be grilled, poached or steamed.
Originally grown for its root, which was added to coffee. Nowadays, the bitter, scooped leaves are used whole in starters, or in salads to add bite. For a sweeter flavour, chicory can be baked whole.
The humble 'snip has been a British staple since the Middle Ages. Sweet yet comfortingly earthy, this root vegetable can be roasted, or used in stews or spicy soups.