Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Mmmmm Vitamins!

This June I joined a CSA. For those of you unfamiliar with the CSA model (and too lazy to click on that link…) the basic idea is you give a farmer a large-ish chunk of money (in my case $200 to Hells Gate CSA) at the beginning of the growing season and you get a share of whatever is ready for harvest each week until the season ends.

Some CSAs are year long affairs but my last veggie share arrived today (sweet potatoes, turnips, red turnips, rutabagas, tat soi, rosemary and beets!). While I’ll be glad to be rid of the pressure to get home every Tuesday by 7:00pm to pick up the veggies I’m really going to miss the surprises. Every week since June it has felt like I got presents on Tuesday evenings – edible presents!

I’m pretty vegetable savvy having grown up with a huge garden and a mother with a sense of growing and cooking adventure but the CSA was able to surprise even me. I had never had Tat soi before. It seems like a cross between baby bok choy and spinach – tonight I just sautéed it in a bit of olive oil with garlic and cherry tomatoes and it was a great side dish to go with grilled salmon with a brown sugar rub. Some CSAs offer fish and meat but my wild salmon was thanks to Mom and Dad’s Alaskan fishing trip (the grill marks were thanks to George Foreman who (shockingly) still does fish steaks better than the cast iron pan).

The whole CSA experience has been great -- a few of the many enjoyable benefits of CSA life:

  1. Reduce your trips to the evil enterprises passing as supermarkets in this city (Key Food and Trader Fair I am talking to you.)
  2. Feel slightly superior to your less organized neighbors who still have to buy produce at said evil enterprises
  3. Enjoy forced veggie consumption (since throwing them away would cause soul crushing remorse (shout out to Mom for instilling such profound food wasting guilt))
  4. Relish fresher, tastier, more varied, healthier, cheaper produce!

You can find your local CSA here.


alia said...

talked to jayme last night, and she said she was in negotiation with other farms to maybe get (in addition to veggies) fruit and milk, meat and eggs! oh, the rapture!


themikestand said...

Please come over and cook for me?