Food Buzz

Because maybe you do care what I had for lunch...

Friday, July 06, 2007

Farm Fresh to me

Wouldn't you love to have a box like this appear on your doorstep?

The box is from Farm Fresh To You, a community-supported agriculture program from Capay Fruits & Vegetables, an organic family farm. Community-supported agriculture is a way to support small, local farms and get your hands on some fantastic produce at the same time. Typically consumers subscribe to a particular farm or program (some coordinate a few local farms) and receive shares of the harvest. Often, CSA's will even deliver right to your door.

I've been wanting to try a CSA out for some time but never got around to it because we belong to the Park Slope Food Coop.* Living away from the Coop was enough of an incentive, but I'm also writing a story on CSAs for Cooke Magazine online. This means I'll have to withhold some of my recipes this week until my story is published. But isn't it fun to have something to look forward to? I know I'm excited.

This week's shipment included 5 yellow nectarines, 10 black plums, 6 oz. blueberries, 1.5 lb. green beans, 1 pt. sungold cherry tomatoes, 1.5 lb. summer squash (3 yellow and 3 green), greenleaf head lettuce, one 18-inch Armenian cucumber, and one big, purple toledo onion. I already have some fun ideas for what I'll be cooking this week. And for once, I've actually planned ahead more than two days!

Tonight I made this cucumber salad. Aside from being extraordinarily long, the cucumber had a mild, almost buttery taste without even the slightest hint of bitterness. I can share the recipe since it comes from FFTO. I wanted to try out one of their recipes first. I also tossed some fresh tomato-herb linguine from While Foods with some olive oil, superb dry-cured salami by local purveyor Molinari, and Segona's own house-made blue cheese. In the summer it especially pays to keep things simple.

Speaking of Cookie, I'm also looking at some of the recipes in their current issue -- lots of tempting ideas. We've already tried freezing grapes, a huge hit with Jasper. I'm dying to try that coiled sausage for a once and future dinner party.

Anyway, stay tuned

*They sell a lot of local produce and are even starting to list it on their blog.


Swizzies said...

LOVE CSAs! We had a very good one back in the '90s in Madison, and it was totally addicting. We didn't get a ton of fruit, mostly vegetables, but dayam they was good.

Sylvia said...

I really enjoyed the CSA in Little Rock - since it was fall/winter they did fun substitutions like home-made pasta and Belgian chocolates.

janeannechovy said...

We haven't done CSA, but we did do Organics to You for a little while, and got a big box of produce bi-weekly. It was great because it got me to try stuff I otherwise might not have, like collard and other greens, and beautiful heirloom beets. Now I will actually buy some of that stuff without having it forced upon me. Not the beets, though--pretty as they are, they still just all taste like dirt to me. :(

The benefit of OtY over CSA was that we got stuff that wasn't locally grown, like bananas and citrus. If we didn't have such a great farmers' market (now open April-December for the main one, and there's a smaller one that's open biweekly year-round), I would seriously consider doing it again.

Kara said...

Oh wow! What a great cuke!

We used to belong to a CSA in Manhattan. I loved it for so many reasons--I was supporting independent farmers, we got to try new and different veggies and the people who ran it were fantastic! Also it as fun to meet other people in the neighborhood who had similar values.

Hevansrich said...

My children's public school here in the OC has a fundraising program in connection with a local farm owned and operated by a 2nd or 3rd generation Japanese family called Tanaka Farms in Irvine. As well as many field trips there to pick and sample fresh veggies and fruit, they have a program where we can pay a fee and receive a box of produce from the farm every month. The cost is $25, with $20 going to the farm and $5 to our school, the yummy fresh food to us. Everyone wins.

Sheri said...

I've been enjoying your blog lately. This post is one my chink in my silly CSA resistance armor. Thanks for sharing.