Wednesday, August 19, 2015

farm fresh

One thing about being in Italy is that it's so very easy to eat well. A market occurs weekly in most towns where you can buy not only shoes, jewelry and the latest fashion trends, but also fresh fruits and vegetables, cheeses, herbs, legumes, nuts and fish. In addition to the weekly town market, there are numerous vendors throughout town that bring their product right to piazza for selling. A farmer can rise early that morning to pick fresh produce from their farm and make it back to town in time to sell to buyers prior to lunchtime. It's one of my absolute favorite things, buying right from the farmer!

Why don't I do that here now that we're home? Instead, I visit our local grocery store that is huge, overpriced and crowded. And I do this weekly. The convenience of driving right down the street to the grocery store has got to take a back seat at least when it comes to buying fruits and veggies. We did experiment with a CSA a couple years ago and while we enjoyed it enough, simple and reasonably priced, I stopped doing it. The produce we received on a weekly basis was enough for our family but it wasn't what I necessarily would have picked for us to enjoy. I think the several weeks we did it, we received so many bundles of kale and beets that we were running out of ways to consume them. And believe me, I'm a big fan of Pinterest and looking up new recipes.

So what do I need to do?

The feeling of eating fresh and supporting local has remained with me since we've returned from Italy and visiting Maple Acres Farm on Monday with the kids left an impression.  Made me feel almost like we were in a different part of the world and it felt good paying a farmer directly for our purchases. Maybe I work out a plan to go every other week while the girls are in school to buy my produce and continue doing meats, fish, etc. at our grocery store. Little man can run around the farm before helping me pick out fruits and veggies. I bet he would love that! Perhaps help out the grocery bill too leaving the produce for the farm. It's worth a try and I'll feel good about buying something directly from the farmer.

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