On our way to our cars one afternoon in the spring of 2013, Elyse and I discovered what looked like a farmer’s market booth across the street from our building. I strolled over to investigate. It seems that one of the local organic farms, Red Wagon Organic Farm had designated a community sponsored agriculture (CSA) pick up site each Monday during the summer a stone’s throw from our building. Intrigued we decided to sign up to split a weekly share for the summer.
Community sponsored agriculture is a way to buy local, seasonal produce directly from a farmer. CSA members or subscribers pay a set fee at the beginning of the growing season and share in the risks and benefits of whatever the season brings. Once harvesting begins, members receive a weekly or bi-weekly share of whatever crops are ready that week.
We found that participating in a CSA expanded our vegetable horizons, adding variety (what does one do with a whole bag of Jerusalem artichokes?) or not (kale again?), prompting us to research and share new recipes and ideas throughout the summer and into the fall. We’ve signed up again this summer; I’m still hoping to discover the definitive turnip recipe for someone who really doesn’t like turnips.