Oh, The Farmer’s Market and the CSA Can be Friends

(Ten points if you get the reference in the title…)

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My fiancee and I recently bought a house in a new neighborhood. It’s been an exciting transition, but one of the things that we lost was easy access to a weekly farmer’s market.

I used to love going to the market every Sunday morning. It wasn’t a very big market, and so you were able to get to know the vendors and farmers on a personal level. It taught me to plan meals for the week, and buy accordingly. It was an amazing ritual. How could we give that up??Fortunately by chance, just as were preparing to move, a guy knocked on our door and offered us the opportunity to receive a CSA box from Farm Fresh to You. CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture, and basically means that you as an individual get to support a local farm by buying products directly from them.

Now, every other week we get a box full of fresh, local(ish), organic food mailed to our doorstep, and it only costs me about $35/every two weeks. Not bad!

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But I DO miss my farmer’s market. Which is why this article from The Kitchn hit home. Which is better? The Farmer’s Market or the CSA? Knowing both worlds, I find them both to have great advantages and, frankly, very few setbacks.

Farmer’s Market Fans say: It’s a more manageable amount of food, You’re definitely keeping it more local, and you get to choose!

CSA Advocates say: It teaches you about more unexpected ingredients, and you have a better sense of exactly where the food is coming from.

I think the biggest factor for me is the right ratio of choice and chance. The initial box they suggest is my starting point, and then I can add and subtract for my own comfort level.

Maitake Mushrooms? Sure!
Tarragon? Why not!
More Nantes Carrots?? Um…maybe next time.

So tell me – where’s your favorite produce spot?

2 thoughts on “Oh, The Farmer’s Market and the CSA Can be Friends”

  1. I’m really into the idea of a CSA, but I can never get myself to actually do it. I love my farmers’ market, but even then, I don’t go as much as I should. I like them both. Also, we have our own backyard vegetable garden now, so once we start being able to harvest (in a few weeks?) I’ll be even less likely to venture out. Just kidding, I can’t eat *all* my produce just from what we grow in the backyard. But we do have a lot of little stores nearby where I can pick up produce on short notice…but a CSA would be convenient and would force me to learn to cook new things…but I also love strolling around the farmers market and talking to the farmers and whatnot. Damn you, Ryback!

    Also, 10 points for me (and Gryffindor, while we’re at it)!

  2. I’m really into the idea of a CSA, but I can never get myself to actually do it. I love my farmers’ market, but even then, I don’t go as much as I should. I like them both. Also, we have our own backyard vegetable garden now, so once we start being able to harvest (in a few weeks?) I’ll be even less likely to venture out. Just kidding, I can’t eat *all* my produce just from what we grow in the backyard. But we do have a lot of little stores nearby where I can pick up produce on short notice…but a CSA would be convenient and would force me to learn to cook new things…but I also love strolling around the farmers market and talking to the farmers and whatnot. Damn you, Ryback!

    Also, 10 points for me (and Gryffindor, while we’re at it)!

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