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CSA Box: August 25

Read more about why I love CSA and locally–grown fruits and veggies here.

Three years into our switch to CSA boxes, I still get giddy over what’s inside!

Lately, I’ve been thinking about how the box items don’t vary too much week to week. We’ve had a few changes, such as peaches one week but not the next, the occasional bag of pecans, or different herbs available, but many of the items stay the same. Take eggplant, for example: we’ve had eggplant in every box since early July. And arugula? I’m practically swimming in it!

One of the trade–offs when switching from grocery store produce to CSA and locally–grown produce is that there isn’t as much the same type of variety in CSA availability. If you want apples at the grocery store, you get apples, regardless of if apples are in season or not. If you want apples at your CSA market, you can only get it them if they’re in season and available. If you’re at the grocery store and you’re tired of eating eggplant, you get something else. If you’re at your CSA market and you’re tired of eating eggplant, you . . . well, you sigh as you realize you are surrounded by eggplant. Again.

I used to worry about getting tired of eating the same thing over and over again while it was in season, but I don’t worry about it anymore. Instead of getting tired of something when it’s in season, I look at it as a chance to enjoy as much of that fruit or veggie as possible until next year. Think about other seasonal things we love. In late November, do you hear anyone saying, “If I have to drink one more pumpkin spice latte, I’m going to scream”? Does anyone pack up Christmas decorations thinking, “Whew. All this evergreen and these nativities. Get them out of my sight, for crying out loud”? Of course not! Embrace the seasonal aspects of what you eat, too.

And as far as variety goes, wouldn’t you rather choose from apples in every shade of green and red you can imagine? And don’t you delight in heirloom tomatoes that never look the same as one another?

aug25box

This week’s box:
3 apples
3 peaches
3 eggplant
3 squash
1 bag of okra
1 bag of brown jasmine rice
1/2 dozen eggs
1 head of lettuce
1 bunch of flowers*
2 bags of arugula**

*choice between flowers or herbs; the practical side of me wanted herbs but the joyful side of me won
**really 1 bag of arugula + 1 bag of green peanuts but I traded with the girl next to me : )

Yep, all that for $25.

aug25alacarte

A la carte items:
2 heirloom tomatoes
1 whole roaster chicken (not pictured because raw chicken—ewwww)

The chicken was a little pricey this week, but our total was just under $45, so we’re still under budget for groceries this month.

Here’s what my meal plan looks like this week:

  • Monday: roast chicken with sauteed squash & zucchini; salad
  • Tuesday: leftovers
  • Wednesday: eggplant & okra parmesan
  • Thursday: leftovers
  • Friday: wine & cheese
  • Saturday: TBA (maybe leftovers for lunch, dinner out . . . we like to leave that element of surprise)

Also, I wish I’d chosen the really big eggplant over the smaller ones. The small ones are easy to make eggplant parmesan out of, but I’m dying to try these eggplant pizzetas (see page 3).

This plan takes care of the chicken, squash, lettuce, arugula, eggplant, okra, tomatoes, and 2–3 apples (with wine & cheese). I’m debating having the parmesan over rice instead of pasta, but if we don’t, we’ll just save the rice for another meal plan.

We eat eggs for breakfast every morning, and I’ll probably put down those peaches by this afternoon. ; )

Anything delicious happening in your world this week? I hope so! Have a good one!

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