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Daily Archives: November 1, 2012

Summary of the Summer CSA

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Twenty five weeks. 285 items. 130 different items. That is where we ended up this year with our Sandy Spring CSA. We had quite a few brand new discoveries this year. Good ones like cheese pumpkins. Not so good ones like cardoons. Which were woody.

Some interesting observations. We did not get asparagus at all. Strange, but never.

The most delivered item was collard greens, eight times. Followed by broccoli, bok choy and zucchini, seven times each. Like this week with collards, broccoli and a humongous bok choy.

A typical May delivery. Lots of variety. Large amounts. Beautiful organic veggies. Can’t beat what we get. We pay $740 for 25 weeks of veggies and some fruit. All organic. A real bargain. But, you have to like veggies. Which we do. I did some creative swapping this year and ended up with at least 8 deliverables of roma tomatoes, suitable for canning. Organic roma. Huge beautiful tomatoes that now live in my freezer to make winter dinners. All told roughly 35 pounds of romas.

The weirdest thing we got? The African horned melon. At least in my opinion. And, I didn’t find it that appealing. I now know in the future if it ever shows up, it is back into that swap box.

Coolest new thing we got? Edamame on the stalk. I loved boiling them in salted water and eating them like peanuts. They are so good that way. But, cleaning a stalk full of edamame is a little messy and time consuming.

All in all, definitely worth the money. I quit figuring out the savings when we were almost $200 ahead of what it cost to join. Next year we will be back. In fact, since I am doing Breezy Willow’s winter CSA, it overlaps for four weeks and we will be getting double deliveries for three weeks.

The fall CSA from Sandy Spring was supposed to start today, but Hurricane Sandy got in the way. No delivery. They are promising to make it up, and I bet they deliver like they promise. With 80 farmers spread across the Lancaster region, they will pool resources and find us good food to bring down on the trucks next week. Hope their losses were minimal, and recoverable. Thankfully this hurricane hit after summer CSA, which is way larger than the fall.

If you have a little sense of adventure, this CSA is a bargain, and trying new veggies is the challenge that keeps it interesting. After all, corn, tomatoes, green beans and onions get boring. We all need a little kohlrabi, turnips or rutabaga to fall into our baskets and make us think differently about what we eat. My roasted veggies included all three plus a sweet potato.

honey glazed roasted root veggies


Eating Locally: The Wrap Up for Summer

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The Summer SOLE Food Challenge, SSFC, is over. I made it through remembering to post almost every week. Eating locally is so easy around here when the markets are still hopping.

Today is the East Columbia Market. Miller Library finished yesterday. The Glenwood and Oakland Mills markets will continue until the weekend before Thanksgiving, and East Columbia ends on the 15th of November. Stocking up on meats from the markets will allow me to continue to put something made in Howard County on my table throughout the winter.

We haven’t heard yet what would be included in the delivery and whether our CSA delivery will take place today. After I finish with the first graders at the Conservancy, I am either picking up a fall delivery, or heading to East Columbia to get a few things. I let the refrigerator get pretty empty before the storm.

I did remember to take some tomatoes and pesto out of the freezer yesterday so tonight there will be pizza with TLV bacon, tomatoes and pesto from my garden, and Bowling Green mozzarella. Mostly local, except for the crust.

The pesto and oven roasted tomatoes are defrosting today. The bacon is out, and I will fry up the entire package, crumble it and use it in salads, omelets and soups. I need eggs, as I hit zero yesterday. Sounds like a trip to TLV Saturday is in store.

You can eat healthy, organic, IPM, non GMO foods around here fairly easily. The ten of us from our challenge have all signed on to continue looking for sources and posting about what we do in the winter. Details are being worked out by us now. I will modify my Food Challenges page to reflect it.

I made a really good crock pot potato leek soup last night, letting the soup cook while we cleaned up the house, and put things back where they belonged. No pictures, because besides being exhausted, two of the potatoes were purple so the soup looked a little weird.

Yes, you can mix all sorts of potatoes into that soup. One of them was even a white sweet potato. I put half the soup in the blender just before serving so we had chunky creamy soup. Four leeks, all the potatoes, an onion, a little celery from the fridge, my homemade veggie broth as a starter, and towards the end I added a cup of almond milk to make it creamy but keep it lactose free. Everything was cut into cubes or small pieces and dumped in the crock pot with a little salt, pepper, and herbs de Provence.

OFf to chase first graders around for a few hours. We are teaching rocks, fossils and extinct animals. Should be a fun morning. Here’s hoping the sun comes out.