One Family's Quest to Eat Local Ingredients

The Wonderful and Amazing Things You Can Do With STRAWBERRIES!!

In Local Shopping Trips on June 8, 2011 at 3:03 am

This post is linked with Read Food Wednesday!

So Juicy!

Well, the strawberry patch that we pick finally opened.  With all the rain we had in our region it slowed things down a bit.  However, the result were tasty, juicy berries that were worth the wait! I’m thankful to the large strawberry farms far far away from my home when I need a fix of strawberries in the dead of winter, but NOTHING compares to how they taste fresh picked from a local farm.   We went to a small strawberry farm that we found from   pickyourown.org.

 

(sorry about the computer glitch, I can’t figure out why we went to dotted underline and italics, but it won’t go away!) :)

An older couple ran the farm with help from their kids and grandkids!  They use minimal spraying before the fruit appears on the plant.   There were lots of people picking their berries and looking at the license plates they came from distances hours away.   The picking experience was fantastic!  I could sit down and just fill and fill my box with fantastic looking berries!  My husband and kids helped and in about 20-30 minutes we had 35 pounds…..yes 35 pounds of strawberries!

35 lbs. of berries!

 
We paid our $35 and went home! I learned that picking your own is not only a good way to help a farmer, but I chose the size and quality of the berry that went into my box, and I saved a ton of money.  In our area the little green quarts you see on the left would cost me $3.50.  I paid  $1.75.  Okay so now I need a plan.  That’s a lot of berries!

I plan on making…(check back for recipes)

freezer jelly

Jelly omlets

Fresh Strawberry pancakes

Waffles with Strawberry maple syrup

Strawberry Muffins

Chocolate Strawberry Smoothies

Mixed Green Salad with Strawberries (and other goodies!)

 

UPDATE:

Okay, my family of 5 ate all 35 pounds of berries.  Yes, all 35 pounds!!!  They were that GOOD!  We had to go back last night  and pick 18 more pounds to make the above listed things. Don’t forget to check back for these great recipes!

FARMERS MARKET VISIT 6-6 & TIPS FOR SHOPPING

In Local Shopping Trips on June 7, 2011 at 2:11 am

We went the the farmer’s market that is really close to our house to see what she had in stock.  Keep in mind the produce she grows and is completely organic and the farms she gets the other produce from can be conventional.  There a few things that she is getting from suppliers.  I always ask and she is always willing to tell me where the food came from!

SIDEBAR:

It’s always a good thing to talk to the farmer.  Ask them questions like where did you grow this?  What are your growing practices/beliefs?  Do you spray with pesticides etc.  This will give you an idea of how your food is grown and whether or not this farmer actually grew your food.  I have a good relationship with this particular market and my kids have actually picked produce!  With the rise in popularity of farmer’s markets, I have read many reports where people obtain their produce from suppliers (gasp….even the grocery store) and resell it to you at the farmer’s market.  You think you are getting farm fresh produce when really it could have been grown in California or you could have obtained it from the grocery yourself.  It’s imortant to ask.

Anyway, because this particular market starts a lot in greenhouses there was a lot available!

I got

1 dz. ears of sweet corn (organic and first of the season…so excited!!)

5 small peaches (obtained from a farm in the south)

Quart of Cherry Tomatoes (organic)

Several large tomatoes (organic)

2 large bags of mixed greens a.k.a. salad mix (this season is going to be short with all the heat we’ve been having!)

*plus she let the boys sample several cherry tomatoes.

Total cost $19

I KNOW if  I had been in the grocery store, I would have picked up a lot more misc. items here and there (especially because I had the kids with me) and spend a lot more!  That’s the nice thing about farmer’s markets/produce stands that I have discovered, your impulse buys are so different and less!!!

I hope to hit the mennonite farmers market today before we go swimming!  I will remember to take a photo!

 

Bacon Wrapped Asaparagus with Honey Glaze — Local Recipe!

In Recipes, side dish, Spring Dishes on June 6, 2011 at 7:39 am

Bacon Wrapped Aparagus with Honey Glaze

Serves 4-5

Asparagus is a vegetable commonly found in spring.  If you have never tried spring asaparagus, I reccomend you do so.  My husband hates asparagus, but absolutely loved this dish!  My kids hate asparagus and they gobbled it up!  In season vegetables obtained from the farmer taste so much different from what you get at the store.  More on why that is true for all produce in a different post…. Now on to the good stuff!!

My inspiration was to turn these into something with a hint of sweetness!  The tips of these were so delicious when they were done.  The hint of bacon and honey in the background was awesome!  It is quick and easy to prepare as well!

Items in bold can be obtained locally!

You need:

 

1 bundle of asparagus seperated evenly into 4 portions

4 pieces of bacon

1/4 cup of honey

dash of sea salt (optional)

waiting to go in the oven!

Pre-heat broiler. Divide the asparagus out into even portions on pan.  Wrap one piece of bacon around each bundle.  Tak brush and brush honey all over the asparagus bundles.  Sprinkle with sea salt (if desired).  Put into oven for 5 minutes checking frequently (depending on your oven).  Using tongs flip the bundles over and cook for another 4-5 minutes checking frequently.  Take out let cool and serve.  (We did not eat the bacon, but you could).

YUM!

These were so melt in your mouth good that I could have eaten it all and not even told the family I made them! :)

This post is linked to Grocery Cart Challenge Recipe Swap

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