Wednesday, August 5, 2015

CSA Experience

I absolutely adore CSAs - I adore fresh vegetables, I adore getting to pick them, I adore getting the benefits of farming without the actual farming... One of the major perks of living where I do is that there's a farm just up the road that offers a CSA.  After work on Tuesdays this summer, I've been walking up to pick up my share.  Here's the good and bad of that experience -

Pro // PRODUCE!

This is the most obvious, but clearly, the produce is the main draw of any CSA.  Locally grown, fresh and delicious, the produce in my share has constantly blown me away.  Even vegetables I typically don't  enjoy are amazing.

Pro // Creative Cooking

One of the most unexpected things for me has been that, with the influx of different ingredients, I've had to discover different, new ways of cooking.  It's been a ton of fun, and there have been a few flavor combinations that I'm now obsessed with .

Pro // Discovering New Loves

Having always hated salads, getting bushels of greens every week was terrifying.  But at some point, I just committed to figuring it out, and ended up with a few favorites (parmesan crisps from Trader Joe's were an absolute game changer).  I also ended up loving squash, especially in the tart I'll post about next week.

Con // Initial Work Load

Tuesday's have basically become a null day for me - once I get home from share pickup, I have to clean and manage all of the produce, which typically takes most of my evening.  This bag has made things much easier, but I still end up with dirty produce all over my playhouse-sized kitchen.  Not my favorite.

Con // Cost

My CSA is pretty reasonable in terms of cost - 20 or so dollars a week, but the initial outlay is high, and there are definitely weeks that I don't get 20 dollars worth of produce - I can't eat that much lettuce in 7 days.

Overall, I'm so glad I joined the CSA - it's fun for me to go choose produce, and I love how excited it gets me to cook. So far, there's been enough variation to keep me engaged, but we'll see if that's still the case come week 18...

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