I have been a member of a Community Supported Agriculture or CSA in NYC for several years now and I love it. Often people tell me that it is hard for them to use all their veggies from their share and thus are afraid to commit to a share. But in my experience, supporting a local farm, in my case the organic Windflower Farm close to Saratoga Springs in upstate NY, is an invaluable learning experience to know more about your food, the time and care it requires and the people behind it. Each week, the head farmer sends an email newsletter detailing how recent weather trends affect the produce we’ll be receiving—anyone still on the fence about global warming should read these missives from the front line! And as the vegetables and fruits rotate from June through November you get a quick lesson in seasonality—no apples until Fall, for example. No “convenience” supermarket store will ever come close to that. And have I mentioned that it costs under $27 dollars a week? If you’re eating a plant-based diet (or trying to) then signing up for a CSA will give you loads of options—literally.
A picture of what I received last week is above. And this is what I prepared: Salad with red leaf lettuce, sliced fresh turnips (raw), and sliced Asian cucumbers (all with balsamic vinegar). I then proceeded to sautee the curly Kale, sweet green peppers, onions and the sweet patty pan squashes with some garlic (which I had from the previous week’s share) end garnished it with some leaves fro that thai basil plant I got. I served all this over brown rice (not included in the share), fed 3 people and had leftovers for the next day for lunch. We polished off the blueberries for dessert, sweet! It seems next year, I better sign up for 2 veggie shares so it will last longer!
Bonus: I’m considering a new class where students would come with me on Tuesdays when I pick up the share and then come back to my house to cook whatever we’ve received. Like a CSA Quick Fire Challenge! Let me hear from you if you’re interested!