C.S.A. stands for…

Community Supported Agriculture

AND

Cheerful Spousal Approval

(after my well-presented excel spreadsheet calculations of reasons we should be part of it)

AND

Current Spending Action

(since I ran out the door to sign up and pay for our farm share 5 minutes later…and it was a big hit to the pocket…but will save us money in the 5-month long run if we can stay disciplined.  Actually, we could have done a monthly billing and made it less drastic, but we had the money saved so I decided to just put it all down and stop worrying.)

AND

Continuous Summer Arrivals

(of local, fresh, varied produce in large weekly quantities from June to October)

AND

Culinary Support ASAP!

(since I have no clue how one eats a fennel bulb, bok choy, parsnips…)

YET, EVEN SO, I

Cannot Stand (the wait till our first) Arrivals!

We’ll be getting most of our veggies (and hopefully most of our grocery bill’s worth of food) from a beautiful place called Winter Green Farm this summer.  That is, of course, in addition to what we’ll be harvesting from our own little garden down the street.  It’s a move Atticus and I are trying to make toward learning how to live more “in season” and fresh-food oriented.  Hopefully we’ll be able to preserve some food for the winter as well, making our farm investment go even further.

I won’t lie, buying a share in a fully-organic CSA is not “cheap” but, when you do the math, neither is it “expensive.”  For us, it was the easiest, cost-effective, and most community-friendly way to help us along the path of trying new tastes and overhauling our processed/meat-heavy diets that we became so comfortable with in our single college years.  Of course you can have a vegetable-centric diet without joining your nearest CSA but, for me, I know it would be harder to stick to my broccoli-shaped guns every time I went to the grocery store (“Man…that Stouffer’s lasangna looks good…and easy…”  We actually have one in our freezer right now…it’s in a glass box that says “Break when in Dire Crave”).

By committing to this CSA program, whole pocketbook and heart, at the beginning of the summer, we’re essentially buying what I like to think of as a gym pass for our kitchen.  You’ve paid the money so you’ll actually do it.  On top of that, you’re getting a big ol’ box of eggplant, chard, basil, and whatnot every single Friday afternoon so you sort of have to eat it (or freeze it, dry it, can it).  It’s going to keep coming at you.  If you don’t stay on top of those vegetables, herbs, and berries you’re just gonna end up with an ever-growing compost heap that cost you cool $500.

We are seriously getting a lot of plant matter coming our way.  Of the 40+ varieties that will fill our weekly box in one way or another, check out this select sampling of the total shares we’re expecting for our moolah:

17 Pints of Blueberries and Strawberries

16 Cucumberswinter-green

18 lbs. Tomatoes

25 onions

15 lbs. potatoes

5 heads of cauliflower

20 ears of corn

16 heads of lettuce

10 lbs. carrots

…and that’s just a mere fraction, people.  It is oh so very mere.  Darn good thing all that is going to come over half a year time-span because imagining it all piled up in my kitchen…well…I just wouldn’t have a kitchen.

So check out our farm since we now, in a very small way, own a piece of it.  We like it and its ginormous greenhouse, friendly cows, and acres of celeriac (anyone? help?).  I can’t even tell you how excited I am to get that first pint of strawberries.

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4 Comments

Filed under Hobbies and Such

4 responses to “C.S.A. stands for…

  1. Rachel

    Yay! Did you find your farm through the localharvest site? Is the drop-off close to you two localvores? I got nervous about the initial outlay of cash during my first summer/autumn CSA, but then realize it ended up averaging $15/week… so one week I decided to inventory my box and walk through Wholefoods to see how much the organic (and local when possible) produce would cost me if I had purchased the equivalent on my own, and as a total price it was about a 25% mark up.

    Pinto: We did find it through localharvest. Thank you for that website! I had tried using other searches, but had only come up with one much smaller farm without local delivery that was forever away. I was immensely happy to see this new one pop up. It’s perfect AND does local delivery (which was a necessity). Because we aren’t so close to them I think our delivery markup price is making ours cash in at around $25 a week, but, like you note, that still is much cheaper that if we tried to find the same quality and variety in stores here (if we even could).

  2. I have a thing for parsnips. A crush, you might say.

    So, things you should try once they come in:

    1. Boil and mash one part parsnip with two parts potatoes. Adds a nice nutty flavor to your masheds.

    2. Himmel und Erde squared (himmel und erde is a german dish of apples and potatoes that are boiled then mashed). Add mashed parsnips.

    3. Take parsnip, slice thinly (either as coins or as sticks) and fry in butter. Magic!

    4. I’ve seen recipes, a few actually, recently for parsnip cupcakes. I’m intrigued…

    Pinto: My hero.

  3. Terri

    Dude?!

    This is possibly the coolest thing I’ve ever heard of! Chris and I are big foodies and are in the midst of growing a garden’s worth of food in pots on our balcony. (So far, things are going very well, but I’m waiting for the bugs to show up…)

    There’s also a farmer’s market on Wednesday nights near the King Street Metro in the summer, and I stop by there on my commute home to pick up a few things.

    I have already searched LocalHarvest site and found a few candidates….Hmmm. :) Thanks for spreading the word!

    Pinto: Ohhhhhhhh man, doesn’t looking at those CSA candidates make you hyper-feeling and drooly? Or…maybe it’s just me…

  4. Laura

    We’ve had neighbors do those before here. Sounds wonderful! Maybe I’ll look into it this summer. Thanks for the reminder!

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