This year Sonlit Meadows decided (after lots of pleading form me) that they would do a CSA. CSA stands for community supported agriculture. It usually means that the consumer pays a set rate for the agreed upon amount of produce and number of weeks up front. It helps for the start up cost for the farmer. For me as the the customer it ends up feeling like a gift that arrives every week.
What we got in our CSA this week: 2 bunches of differing types of kale, 1 bunch of beets with the tops on, 1 bunch of onions, a big carton of strawberries, broccoli, cauliflower (2 kinds), & 2 different heads of lettuce
Here is how we used it...
I'm pretty sure my love language is food and cooking. Yes, yes, I know....that's not a choice, but if you're curious when I took the test my real love language is quality time. That fits right in with cooking I guess.
When I cook I love grabbing a glass of wine putting on some chill music and setting to work. This, of course, is when I have time to relax and cook.
Either way during my prep work I almost always find myself thinking about the people I'm cooking for, & who the food I'm using came from. Let me tell you this week Brian has been so happy with me because I have been on cloud nine in the kitchen! Using all those wonderful veggies accompanied buy the meat we raised and milk from our cow....We might just have to tie me down so I don't fly away.
Using beautiful ingredients that I love is just so much more enjoyable than the grocery.
Often people are scared of a CSA for two reasons:
1. I won't use it all and it will go bad....FALSE
2. It's too expensive....FALSE
On Sunday I took about 20 min with all the veggies, my huge chefs knife, and a cutting board and went to it! I cut everything up into the sizes or cuts we would normally use and put them back in the fridge....basically I set it up like Sun Basket or Blue Apron.
Every night (except for date night where I took my time and enjoyed cooking.....again love language) it took under 30 min to make dinner in prep time.
You can go through all of your veggies because you are using them everyday.
Eating in and can save you SO much $$$. It can be easy to say it's hard and time consuming to cook at home and I get it! But it's time to prioritize.
At the beginning of this week I made it my mission to get through all these veggies and make meal prep as quick as possible so I wouldn't have an excuse not to cook.
This week we spent the equivalent of $79 on food eaten in home. We got about 9 meals out of that between us because we had leftovers. That boils down to a little over $4/ each meal! You can't eat at McD's for less than that hardly!
It's not too expensive. Eating with intention is more affordable than grabbing the last minute quick fix to the hunger.
Make a plan....Stick to it
Here is the one and ONLY recipe I used for the week.
Preheat oven to 350º.
Heat olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Sprinkle chuck roast with salt and pepper. Add roast to pan; cook 5 minutes, turning to brown on all sides. Remove roast from pan. Add onion to pan; sauté 8 minutes or until tender.
Return browned roast to pan. Add the red wine, thyme sprigs, chopped garlic, beef broth, and bay leaf to pan; bring to a simmer. Cover pan and bake at 350° for 1 1/2 hours or until the roast is almost tender.
Add carrots and potatoes to pan. I didn't have any of these so I threw in some hardy greens to add a vegetable in. Cover and bake an additional 1 hour (20 minutes for me) or until vegetables are tender. Remove thyme sprigs and bay leaf from pan; discard. Shred meat with 2 forks. Serve roast with vegetable mixture and cooking liquid. Garnish with thyme leaves, if desired.
Joining a CSA was a big commitment. We have to show up EVERY week with an appropriate container. We receive a seemingly huge amount of veggies THEN we have to figure out what to do with it throughout the week! It can be a pretty intimidating idea to even think about. Here are some tips that have helped me stay afloat from drowning in veggies throughout the week