Community Supported Agriculture is this neat thing where you give money to (usually) a local farmer, and then during the harvest season you get a box of random produce.
Paradise has an AWESOME CSA program. Tomatoes, lettuce (cleaned!), potatoes, onions, garlic, fruit, fun random things in reasonable enough amounts that they make a side-dish but not so much that you’re drowning in kohlrabi. Nary a collard or mustard green in sight (so far anyway). All delicious and wonderful. And we get it on Friday which means it’s easy to do menu planning and grocery shopping for the week after knowing what’s in the box.
Problem: The vegetables are all so good and so abundant that they’ve really taken over. We don’t finish things by the next Friday. We don’t go out to eat because the food at home is better than what is close by and we feel guilty for not finishing things. We don’t buy as much crazy stuff at the grocery store or farmer’s market even though the grocery stores and farmers markets are awesome. We’re not eating a whole lot of meat. Occasionally we will have just green beans for dinner because it’s Thursday and we’ve had those green beans for two weeks and we don’t want to make dilly beans again.
It is making riotous living hard, even though it is really good for our checkbooks.
We’re not stopping, but we wouldn’t mind if the boxes were a bit less generous! (No, we don’t have anybody to split a share with– our local friends have their own box and they use the entire box because their kids love veggies at a much higher level than our kids do, though their kids are also not crazy about green beans. The CSA version of splitting is every other week which is tempting except it is really hard to remember to pick something up every other Friday instead of every Friday.) But I am a little bit looking forward to the winter.
What have your CSA experiences been like? If you’ve done one, do you think it has saved you money or improved the quality of your eating?