Lately, I’ve been ordering online from a very small urban garden about a mile from my house. They can’t have everything a grocery store has, so I often look through their website and think, “How will I find enough produce to spend at least 10 bucks, making it feel okay to have them deliver it to my door?” I don’t want to waste food, so I have to get creative.
In this last shipment, I felt pretty proud. I purchase fresh herbs – thai basil and rosemary – which I’ve used in a lot of my cooking lately, including the mac and cheese from a couple of nights ago. I also got yellow squash which featured in a potato dish I haven’t written about yet, and four jalapeños in a cute green bag that I need to use for something but don’t really know for what yet. Husband is the spicy food person, and I’ve been told that chopping jalapeños can be hazardous to your health… or at least to your eyes!
Our local bakery has also partnered with them, so I got the rest of my way to 13 dollars of produce by adding in a lemon rosemary bread, which was consistent and delicious in all the ways that my bread never is, and made great toast for breakfasts; it replaced buying store-bought bagels that we usually use for breakfast, which I count as a win. Lastly was a new bag of kale, which got put straight in for more kale chips.
The fun part, of course, is the community of it. The woman who runs the boxes from her mini van up to my front door is now becoming a friend of mine; I give her back the cardboard box from the previous week and take the one she has in her hands. We chat about the day and how the tomatoes are coming in, both in her garden and in mine. If you have ever felt happy to see a full fridge or a pile of groceries, I assure you, the feeling of a box of local produce is even better, and it really isn’t expensive. I feel like I’m healthier for it after only two weeks, and I’m looking forward to the cooking challenge of using what’s in season.