Tuesday, May 12, 2009

The vegetable and fruit bin are so very full

Although Trillian and I are not locavores, we do try to shop at farmer's markets and choose other foods from nearby when possible. In other places we've lived, we've thought about joining a CSA. That's Community Supported Agriculture--the general idea behind it is that people buy memberships/shares from a local farm and in return receive a certain amount of produce, usually spread out over time.

We had considered one CSA in our area last year, but we would have had to go to Capital City for a mid-day, 2-hour window on a weekday to pick it up.

Then Trillian found a brochure for another CSA, one which would either deliver our box or allow us to pick it up at a local business during a 5-hour window. They also give us the option of committing for only 4 boxes and choosing an alternating week schedule, both choices we made for our initial foray.

An interesting aspect of this CSA is that they supplement their boxes with produce from other close-ish farms. This means that we get a greater selection of items in our box, including--this week--a few apples and oranges.

Most of the items this week were various greens, and I made a huge salad tonight, throwing in a little of this and a little of that. Even made my own vinaigrette, mixing in some green onions (from the box) and the herbs we're growing at home.

For the veggies I wouldn't usually buy, I'm diving into one of my favorite cookbooks: Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone. The section I refer to most often has an alphabetical listing of different vegetables, general information on each one, and then several recipes. Did you know you can cook turnip greens? I'll be giving them, and the turnips too, a try tomorrow.

For us, this is a fairly economical choice too. For the amount of produce we're receiving in a box, we wouldn't be able to buy the same things in a grocery store for much cheaper, especially with all the organics. And since I've decided to figure out a way to use every last bit, we'll definitely be getting our money's worth.

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