Meghan is a Nutrition Education Specialist for DPH.
With all the benefits of eating locally grown foods, I’ve been looking to do more than just give lip-service to the trend. I really wanted to commit myself to eating the produce that Massachusetts has to offer, and supporting local farmers. So I joined a CSA. CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture, which is where a farmer offers shares of produce to the public. Usually with CSAs, the share is a weekly box of vegetables, but other farm products might be included. Membership lasts for the growing season, usually June through October. So my commitment is one that will last me all summer and most of the fall! I wasn’t sure exactly what this would mean, since every week the farm chooses what to put in the box for their customers.
I just got my first box this past week, and it was full of lesser-known goodies, like Swiss chard, kale, and beets, oh my! I’m embarrassed to say that as a dietitian, some of these veggies have never been stars in my diet. My “weekly box” also contained strawberries, spinach, and lettuce, but I was intrigued by some of these new-to-me vegetables.
My fiancé cooked his first-ever beets and beet greens recipe. With a little garlic and red wine vinegar, this was a winner! I’m looking forward to breaking out of my usual vegetable rut by sautéing some kale tonight with olive oil, garlic, and red pepper flakes.
If you need a little more veggie- adventure in your life, I can tell you that it’s easy to find a CSA in your area. Although it’s a lot of fun, you don’t have to join a CSA to support farmers. You can visit your local farm stand or farmers’ market this summer.
What new veggies will you try? Care to share a good recipe or neat ideas about eating locally? We’d love to hear from you.
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