Sunday, June 8, 2008

Eating Locally grown/ raised food

Our farmers market opened this weekend. We enjoyed browsing the booths and making well thought out purchases. One of our goals for many years has been to "eat local". So many people benefit when you buy directly from farmers. Of course, the farmer benefits by selling his/her produce and our family benefits by eating food that was often organically grown on a small, sustainable scale (we always ask before buying - I like to know how our food was grown/ raised). In addition, because the food is not transported across the country or even across borders, everyone benefits just a little by reduced fuel consumption and pollution.

We bought zucchini and yellow squash as well as tomatoes, black berries, cucumbers and homemade blueberry jam. We even found a source of pastured chicken (they were sold out by the time we arrived. We will be there at the opening bell next market!).

Before we moved here a little over a year ago, we used to buy a lot of our food directly from a wonderful sustainable farm. This wonderful farm sold us in-season veggies as well as eggs, pastured chickens, tillapia and beef. We missed them so much when we moved. It was hard at first to get used to buying our meat at the store and not knowing who raised it.

Since moving here, we've only found pastured eggs and now the chickens. But I am so excited about the chickens :o) Our goal for the next few weeks will be to eat at least one complete meal each week made from completely local foods. I'll post about it the plan in detail on Monday for Menu Plan Monday. I'm hoping that as the summer progresses we can increase from one to many local meals each week.

Here's what we made for lunch with our farmer's market finds. We had a grilled veggie panini (the bread was homemade, but not with local wheat). We oven grilled the thinly sliced zucchini, and squash in olive oil and salt/ pepper then we piled it on the split loaf (it looked like a french bread loaf). We sliced the tomato and put that on top of the grilled veggies and topped it with cheese (not local) and put it under the broiler to melt. We drizzled olive oil and red wine vinegar and the put the top on and sliced it into individual sandwiches. Yummy! We had our berries for desert. The cucumber we saved for snacking today. That was yummy, too.

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