Friday, April 15, 2011

Program in a Box

It's Alicia writing here...

I have been thinking a lot lately about eating locally and supporting our local farmers and the economy. But in all honesty, I hadn't put that to practical use until 3 weeks ago. I was reading the local paper when I came across an article about Local Farms Delivery. The thought behind this program was to support local farmers while eating farm fresh produce that was either in season or produce that could be stored over winter months. I called the same day and ordered my first 4 boxes.

I waited expectantly on the first Monday for the delivery. My patience began to wear thin when the box hadn't been dropped off by 9am...but that's just because I was super excited and I was hoping to wake up at 7:30, open my door and find a box full of wonderful goodies! It finally arrived around 2:00pm, just as I was leaving to pick up my oldest from school. I quickly glanced in the box and to my shock there was a bunch of unrecognizable leafy greens..oh no! But no worries my nearby friend had a produce guide which quickly identified the greens as Rapini or Broccoli Raab

The box also contained carrots, apples, potatoes, leeks, red onion, a few cooking onions, parsnips, 1 dozen brown eggs, and 1 loaf of organic homemade bread. Just by looking at it I wasn't sure if it was worth the $40 I paid for it. So... I went to the local Thrifty's to do a price comparison. To my surprise there was a $16.00 difference - my box being the better price.

So now I'm on to my third box. It has been a journey trying to figure out what to do with the vegetables. I discovered that Rapini is ok in pasta, however we do not like the stems. My husband ate the stir-fry containing a bunch of Kale that we received the second week.

This morning I diced up 8 cups of fresh Rhubarb and prepared it for the freezer (I know, I should probably eat it fresh but I honestly don't have time this week to deal with it!). Nadine and I have been looking into other box programs because there have been a few downsides to this one. First off, I know that apples aren't in season but if I do find them in my box I would hope they weren't as beat up as some of the ones I've seen this past month. I am also more than capable of making my own bread every week. So, we will keep you in the loop as far as the food box programs go. In general though I do think that the food box idea is terrific. It gets you eating locally and in season which I am very grateful for, not to mention that we are actually eating more leafy greens!

Just out of mere curiosity, do you try to eat seasonally? What determines what you buy in the store? Price? A menu plan for the week?


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