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Eating Relatively Locally

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Over the past years, we have been migrating much of our food choices to those locally produced, where we can find them. Beyond that, we have also committed to buy from small or local businesses when possible. Since 1980, we have also supported MD, PA and VA wineries, as well as those in the Finger Lakes. We pick our own fruit when we can, and have begun freezing and canning.

In 2006, we took one of my favorite vacations. Ten days renting a home in Sonoma, in order to experience wine country in a unique way. We bought at farmer’s markets and food stands, purchased local wines and cooked dinners on the grill, using the freshest and finest ingredients. I envy those who live there, as Sonoma County is a perfect climate for year round production.

We also bought and loved the local olive oils from the area, and to this day we order California olive oil and grapeseed oil and have it delivered once a year. Beats getting oil from Europe in terms of carbon footprint. We add a half gallon of balsamic in order to support the small business, even though I know it comes from Europe. Can’t get everything in our back yards, but we at least think about it.

St. Helena Olive Oil Co., owned by Peggy O’Kelly, is a truly wonderful source of goodies. I have had no regrets in continuing to support them and love their products, even though they are expensive, they are worth every penny. These are my salad dressing olive oils, not for cooking. Their grapeseed oil I use in baking and cooking, when I have my best meats and seafood to make.

Now, my vinaigrettes are made with products I love, and they taste so much fresher than any store bought dressings.

About AnnieRie

Retired, I am following my dream of living in quiet west Howard County, a rural oasis, not far from the urban chaos, but just far enough. I love to cook, bake, garden, and travel. I volunteer at Howard County Conservancy. I lead nature hikes, manage programs and show children all the wonders of nature, and the agricultural connection to their food.

4 responses »

  1. Do you find yourself trying other olive oils, or are you 110% loyal? We’ve thought about getting as much directly from known sources. As much as I love trader joes, I’ve become choosy about what I buy depending on where it’s from.

  2. Not related to today’s post – but where is the Silver Spring farmer’s market you mentioned that is open all year?

    • The Silver Spring Market, open Saturday from 10-1 in the winter, is on Ellsworth drive between Georgia Ave. and Fenton. The Wayne Avenue Garage has free parking. You park in the garage and take the elevator down. Walk out and down to the market. There are a dozen or so vendors in the winter. Atwater’s bread, Spring Valley and Quaker Valley farms. Mock’s Greenhouse, Amish meats, Gunpowder Bison. A farm with goat meat. An organic greens farm from PA. A dairy.

      It is a great market, but a little pricey.


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