The past few years, since my wife moved in with me, we’ve planted a garden. This year will be no different, but today she offered up an additional idea, to sign up for a CSA. CSA’s are subscriptions that you sign up for with a local farm, and then every 1-2 weeks you pick up a basket of farm fresh produce and other foods. Many CSA’s also can provide fresh eggs and meat throughout the summer as well.
When she mentioned the idea I also tossed out the alternative of just trying to hit the Farmer’s Markets more often. Although the idea of going to the Farmer’s Market has an appeal because of the fun nature of them, there’s other parts of a CSA that make it a good choice for us.
First, I know that we would probably make ‘plans’ to go to the market, but then things would come up and we wouldn’t be sure exactly what we wanted to buy, and excuses would pile up and we’d end up just not going as often as we should. With a CSA you simply pick up a box every other week (some CSA’s are every week) and there’s no shopping or choosing involved. The food is simply there in your home to use over the next couple weeks.
Second, you never know what you’ll get in a CSA basket. It might be vegetables you’ve never heard of, or ones that you’ve never tried. Part of a CSA is the adventure of learning about new food and trying new produce. It can become a game and a challenge to see what you get, and then come up with recipes to try new things.
Finally, something that both Farmer’s Markets and CSA’s share is fresh local produce, and an encouragement to cook more food at home. I’m hopeful that this summer’s experiment will be an exciting food adventure for our family. Encouraging us to try new things, and cook more at home.