Holly: Supporting Local Farmers
At a recent Moms Group gathering about Feeding Little Foodies (see Lisa’s blog) a discussion started surrounding buying produce from local farms. Apparently there are these things called CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) in your community.
I looked into it and, sure enough, South Coast Farms, the farm that is right down the street from my house (yes, there are farms in Orange County) has a CSA program. I looked into it online. The cost wasn’t too prohibitive. It turned out to $32 a week for a ‘basket’ of seasonal fruits and vegetables. My husband and I discussed it and thought that we probably spend about that much a week on produce. The difference is that the produce we buy is the produce we WANT and we won’t get to pick what comes in this basket. However, we decided that the local, organic route was worth a try and I signed up.
When I went to pick-up the first basket I was shocked by it’s size- it was HUGE! I consider it to be more of a half-barrel than a basket! There were so many different fruits and vegetables and even a little bunch of flowers! The basket consisted of Strawberries, Beets, Chard, Kale, Cilantro, Kohlrabi, Lettuce, Broccoli, Sweet Peas, Avocado, Apples, Valencia Oranges, Spring Onion, Navel Oranges, Turnips, Pears, Blood Oranges. Now, I don’t know about you, but I had to look up what some of these vegetables looked like so I could pick them out in the basket!
The great thing about all of the variety is that it forced me to try things I might otherwise not buy in the grocery store. I made a fun soup with the chard and kale; I made sautéed sweet onions (delicious!); and tonight I made beets and turnips sautéed with onions and garlic.
The fruits are a-m-a-z-i-n-g and juicy and sweet. I ate the strawberries the first two days and I am still enjoying the oranges, apples and pears.
Here is a link to CSA so that YOU can look into a CSA in your hometown. By joining a CSA you will be supporting your community farmers AND helping your family eat healthier. I’m glad that I did!