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(Huffington Post)   "Why you should join a CSA" But I don't wanna join the Confederate States of America   (huffingtonpost.com) divider line 110
    More: Stupid, CSAs, C.S.A.: The Confederate States of America, small farm, grocery stores  
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7455 clicks; posted to Main » on 07 Jul 2014 at 6:03 PM (24 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-07-07 11:15:12 AM  
#1:  Low, low labor cost...it's like the people on the farms are working for FREE!
 
2014-07-07 11:42:36 AM  
I joined a CSA a couple summers ago. Lots and lots of vegetables that I hated. But such a variety of vegetables I hated!

But I did learn of green zebra tomatoes. That was a good day.
 
2014-07-07 11:56:44 AM  
THE SLAW SHALL RISE AGAIN!
 
2014-07-07 12:30:01 PM  
I absolutely love my CSA. I like knowing my farmers' names.

What I don't understand is why people, in 2014, continue to insist upon growing Swiss chard. I don't like someone delivering sadness to my doorstep, and Swiss chard is green, leafy sadness.
 
2014-07-07 01:03:53 PM  

Lando Lincoln: I joined a CSA a couple summers ago. Lots and lots of vegetables that I hated. But such a variety of vegetables I hated!

But I did learn of green zebra tomatoes. That was a good day.


I hated the fact that I had to pick it up every week
 
2014-07-07 01:23:07 PM  

xanadian: THE SLAW SHALL RISE AGAIN!


I wonder if they have a mix of hot peppers called "Atlanta"...
 
2014-07-07 01:54:34 PM  
As God is my witness, I shall never go hungry again!

Well, until winter at least.
 
2014-07-07 01:56:35 PM  
Then, suddenly KALE!
 
2014-07-07 02:07:24 PM  
So you can say "What the hell am I supposed to do with five pounds of chard?"
 
2014-07-07 02:13:25 PM  
We don't have anything like that around here, but the local farmers market is pretty cool
 
2014-07-07 02:39:21 PM  

tallguywithglasseson: So you can say "What the hell am I supposed to do with five pounds of chard?"


www.wearysloth.com
 
2014-07-07 03:52:18 PM  

Lando Lincoln: I joined a CSA a couple summers ago. Lots and lots of vegetables that I hated. But such a variety of vegetables I hated!

But I did learn of green zebra tomatoes. That was a good day.


We tried it a few years ago, and had much the same experience.  Lots of vegetables that we didn't want, little of what we did want, and more expensive than going to the asian market to get what we wanted.
 
2014-07-07 04:03:40 PM  
www.ospreypublishing.com
 
2014-07-07 04:20:08 PM  

xanadian: THE SLAW SHALL RISE AGAIN!


www.operatorchan.org
 
2014-07-07 04:37:08 PM  
So my wife and I sprang for a CSA this year. That's right, my bacon-gobbling square old ass signed up with the most hardcore-hippie envirovegan farm in the region - not a piece of power equipment in sight. They use horses to till the fields.

Yeah, lots of chard and kale so far. But lots of the best damn strawberries I have ever had, also. It's too bad my wife ran out of time to make pie with them because she was so busy looking up chard and kale recipes.

So far the price is about comparable to the local supermarket, and with the CSA we know damn well we're not buying produce that looks good but tastes like cardboard because it's been bred to survive a trip from Chile, or that'll go bad the minute it's away from the display shelf.
 
2014-07-07 04:38:41 PM  

xanadian: THE SLAW SHALL RISE AGAIN!


images.fineartamerica.com
 
2014-07-07 04:39:34 PM  
I say, I say, I do declare, this succulent peach reminds me of my days back at Belle Isle.
 
2014-07-07 04:51:19 PM  
I never have good gift ideas for my wife. This is going on the list, though.
 
2014-07-07 05:47:31 PM  

BalugaJoe: [www.ospreypublishing.com image 300x404]


Looks interesting, thanks
 
2014-07-07 06:00:09 PM  

Gonz: I absolutely love my CSA. I like knowing my farmers' names.

What I don't understand is why people, in 2014, continue to insist upon growing Swiss chard. I don't like someone delivering sadness to my doorstep, and Swiss chard is green, leafy sadness.


Not if you saute it and add it to a ricotta tart (check with your  dairy CSA for fresh ricotta).

Saute stems and a diced onion in olive oil until tender. Add torn leaves and salt and pepper. Put the lid on until wilted.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, mix together 16 ounces of ricotta, 1/2 C fresh, grated parm (or any odds and ends of hard cheese hanging out in your cheese drawer), a whole egg, salt, pepper, 1 T fresh thyme (or your favorite herb, 1/2 t crushed red pepper flakes (optional but good), salt, pepper, and a good grating of nutmeg. When the leaves have wilted, fold the stuff from the pan into the bowl.

Put in your favorite pie crust, sprinkle with a bit more hard cheese, and bake at 400F for 40 minutes or so (until the edges are firm but the middle is still a bit soft but set).

This also works with Kale.
 
2014-07-07 06:04:43 PM  

Gonz: I absolutely love my CSA. I like knowing my farmers' names.

What I don't understand is why people, in 2014, continue to insist upon growing Swiss chard. I don't like someone delivering sadness to my doorstep, and Swiss chard is green, leafy sadness.


7/10 -- I almost bit.
 
2014-07-07 06:06:37 PM  

Gonz: I absolutely love my CSA. I like knowing my farmers' names.

What I don't understand is why people, in 2014, continue to insist upon growing Swiss chard. I don't like someone delivering sadness to my doorstep, and Swiss chard is green, leafy sadness.


static.comicvine.com
 
2014-07-07 06:08:26 PM  
I did a meat CSA...it was pretty awesome. However, if I do it again it will be the smaller delivery.Iit took me forever to eat it all down and I grill a lot.
 
2014-07-07 06:10:21 PM  
If I already didn't have the garden in the back, I'd be down with joining a CSA.  I spent a year in a co-op and having to make meals with the random boxes of vegetables that showed up in the fridge taught me how to actually cook as opposed to just following a recipe.

But all the ones 'round here are pricey as hell anyway, so meh.  And only the larger operations have CSAs (although just 'larger' in terms of compared to other small farmers).  I help run a farmer's market and I think (?) none of our vendors have CSAs, although there is one woman who makes ready to eat meals from local farmers with a CSA style arrangement.

/shrug
 
2014-07-07 06:10:33 PM  

BKITU: xanadian: THE SLAW SHALL RISE AGAIN!

[www.operatorchan.org image 333x500]


Just stole that pic
 
2014-07-07 06:12:19 PM  
But... She has HUGE... Tracts of land....
 
2014-07-07 06:12:22 PM  

TheYeti: I did a meat CSA...it was pretty awesome. However, if I do it again it will be the smaller delivery.Iit took me forever to eat it all down and I grill a lot.


Not quite a CSA, but when we had more money we used to buy in with a local rancher for some meat, mostly beef and pork.  Oh man, I have never had such deliciousness.  So much too.  I eat a lot of meat and I couldn't keep up.  It was amazing.

I could never do a veggie CSA.  While I adore most veggies, there are far too many I don't like or can't eat.  Any kind of bell pepper for example is straight out.
 
2014-07-07 06:13:06 PM  
They're pushing CSAs around here, although 90% of the veggies aren't grown within 200 miles of here.

There are stray fields of various peppers, tomatoes, and cucumbers, but all those are contracted. They pick enough to fill the contracts, then destroy the unharvested leftover crop because the contracts require that nothing from the field can be sold or even given away (as that could potentially encroach on their target markets.) I watched them shred and plow under about 100 acres of perfectly beautiful unharvested bell and jalapeno, and 20+ acres of tomatoes about 3 miles from me last year because of that. Cucumber contracts are usually open ended because there's always some place they can ship extra cukes for big bucks.
 
2014-07-07 06:13:28 PM  

tallguywithglasseson: So you can say "What the hell am I supposed to do with five pounds of chard?"


Five pounds of chard (or kale) will easily make twenty pounds of vomit.
 
2014-07-07 06:14:29 PM  
The fact that you can buy tomatoes any time of the year at the grocery store has left us all confused. Tomatoes grow in the summer and that's it. When you eat from your local farm, you have no choice but to eat seasonal options. It's good for us, for the farmers, and the earth.

What a load of shiat. Eating a variety vegetables, year round, regardless of the season, is good for you. And good for the farmers that grow them down in Mexico.
 
2014-07-07 06:15:48 PM  

TheYeti: I did a meat CSA...it was pretty awesome. However, if I do it again it will be the smaller delivery.Iit took me forever to eat it all down and I grill a lot.


I was very, very tempted to put down money to buy a part of a cow with the SO's grandma and her neighbors, but then I remembered I don't have a chest freezer so it was probably not the best idea.

Did you get a variety of meats at least?  I'd actually be down to join a meat CSA if it was just regular deliveries of a variety of meats and cuts from decently raised animals and not an absurd amount of it.  As it is I don't buy meat all that often, except at restaurants, because it's been ages since I've been able to get to the market on the one day I week the local organic meat or fresh caught fish sellers are around.  And buying meat for the sake of meat if it isn't gonna taste awesome isn't that appealing to me anymore, unless I don't have to prepare it, because I am lazy like that sometimes.

Dammit, I miss that fish, though.  Great lakes whitefish.  Good, good stuff.
 
2014-07-07 06:17:51 PM  
We have been CSA members for many years in the Seattle area, and we love it. Learned about kohlrabi, mastered stir fry with bok choy, gailon, and other tasty veggies, and the kid chows down on healthy fruit salads and leafy salads all the time. Any vegetable tastes good if you cook it up with a little bacon and onions, and oven roasted root veggies are winners in our house. By needing to get through what you receive each week, we eat much, much healthier during the harvest season. (June - Oct)
 
2014-07-07 06:19:52 PM  
Swiss chard is indeed leafy sadness. Maybe it's a super-taster thing, but I've tried the "well you just haven't tried it in _______!" recipes and nope, what might have been a very nice risotto or stir fry just tastes of nothing but bitter, soapy regret that I included chard in the recipe. Bleh.
 
2014-07-07 06:20:18 PM  
If you can, grow it yourself.

Exercise + fresh veggies, it's a win win!!!!

//Sweet corn is over 6' tall already.
 
2014-07-07 06:21:01 PM  

Gonz: What I don't understand is why people, in 2014, continue to insist upon growing Swiss chard.


1. Tolerant of a huge variety of temperatures.
2. Doesn't bolt.
3. No pests.
4. Pretty.

It's like wonder-lettuce. And as a bonus, it doesn't have the flavor and texture of fish food like kale has.
 
2014-07-07 06:21:33 PM  

That Guy Jeff: The fact that you can buy tomatoes any time of the year at the grocery store has left us all confused. Tomatoes grow in the summer and that's it. When you eat from your local farm, you have no choice but to eat seasonal options. It's good for us, for the farmers, and the earth.

What a load of shiat. Eating a variety vegetables, year round, regardless of the season, is good for you. And good for the farmers that grow them down in Mexico.


... yeah, expecting certain fresh vegetables year round is kind of stupid, but you can eat local vegetables all year round if you do some planning, even if you're quite far from Mexico.

Season Extension + Canning, Freezing, Drying, Root Cellar Storage, Whatever.  I mean, I'm pretty sure people survived in Michigan before we got to the point where we could easily ship up tomatoes all year round.

Anyway, eating a variety of vegetables year round is good for you and all.  But winter tomatoes taste like crap, probably because they were bred to handle shipping and not for flavor.  Eating local and with the seasons just tastes a hell of a lot better, screw every other consideration if you like.

I'm gonna go home now and eat a whole bunch of mulberries and raspberries, and pick some more and freeze 'em when I get full.  Good times.  Probably red-stained hands, but good times.
 
2014-07-07 06:24:34 PM  

This text is now purple: Gonz: What I don't understand is why people, in 2014, continue to insist upon growing Swiss chard.

1. Tolerant of a huge variety of temperatures.
2. Doesn't bolt.
3. No pests.
4. Pretty.

It's like wonder-lettuce. And as a bonus, it doesn't have the flavor and texture of fish food like kale has.


You don't have leaf miners in your area, do you?

We gave up trying to grow it because of those damn leaf miners.  Even row covers didn't help.

www.digginfood.com
 
2014-07-07 06:25:35 PM  

Gulper Eel: It's too bad my wife ran out of time to make pie with them because she was so busy looking up chard and kale recipes.


And you are incapable of helping put up the chard and kale and making your own strawberry pie because ?  ?  ?
 
2014-07-07 06:26:34 PM  

meat0918: This text is now purple: Gonz: What I don't understand is why people, in 2014, continue to insist upon growing Swiss chard.

1. Tolerant of a huge variety of temperatures.
2. Doesn't bolt.
3. No pests.
4. Pretty.

It's like wonder-lettuce. And as a bonus, it doesn't have the flavor and texture of fish food like kale has.

You don't have leaf miners in your area, do you?

We gave up trying to grow it because of those damn leaf miners.  Even row covers didn't help.

[www.digginfood.com image 475x317]


You've never grown brussels sprouts, have you?

Chard gets some bugs, but less than the bok choi, spinach, and cabbages do. They tolerate frost better than the spinach and choi, and unlike them, don't bolt as soon as May hits. They just camp out under the peppers until September.

And it keeps the rhubarb company.
 
2014-07-07 06:28:05 PM  

This text is now purple: Gonz: What I don't understand is why people, in 2014, continue to insist upon growing Swiss chard.

1. Tolerant of a huge variety of temperatures.
2. Doesn't bolt.
3. No pests.
4. Pretty.

It's like wonder-lettuce. And as a bonus, it doesn't have the flavor and texture of fish food like kale has.


Um.... I can agree on 3/4, but I've had pests all up and down my damn rainbow chard before.  Including some growing in a windowbox at my Mom and Dad's place that for some stupid reason had black aphids all up and down the stems constantly.   It was edible, and regrew like 3 times that year, but cutting it off and rinsing off the bugs was an exercise in "ick". Did a soap spray once or twice to no effect.  I still have no idea where those SOBs originated from or if they had any plan in life other than traveling up and down the chard.  Didn't seem to be eating it either though the growth was probably hindered a bit.  Since it was in a window box, that was okay.

But chard generally fights off pests rather well, so that's cool.  Kale is the best at pest-avoidance with a modicum of effort IMHO.  And tastes a heck of a lot better after the first frost.  We put it in late and don't really bother harvesting it at all until everything else dies off.
 
2014-07-07 06:30:41 PM  
"Why you should join a CSA" But I don't wanna join the Confederate States of America

img.fark.net
No? How about a nice front yard garden in the Monroe Republic?

They even have these really on-the-nose Confederate uniforms.
 
2014-07-07 06:33:05 PM  

Mr. Right: Gulper Eel: It's too bad my wife ran out of time to make pie with them because she was so busy looking up chard and kale recipes.

And you are incapable of helping put up the chard and kale and making your own strawberry pie because ?  ?  ?


Hell, be lazy and buy some shortcake/pound cake and whipped cream at the store.  Sheesh.
 
2014-07-07 06:33:46 PM  
Both of the local CSAs cost far more than trips to the store.
 
2014-07-07 06:33:57 PM  
me and the GF did this a while back for a couple months. we had to go pick it up at 7am every saturday, and then we just ended up throwing half the stuff out anyway. and most of what we did use was "forcing it", so to speak, and that got old real quick.

i'm not sure these things need to exist. off the top of my head i can think of half a dozen alternatives that are much more reasonable (and realistic) than dragging my ass out of bed at 630 on a saturday so i can come home with a 20lb box of random produce.
 
2014-07-07 06:45:54 PM  

This text is now purple: meat0918: This text is now purple: Gonz: What I don't understand is why people, in 2014, continue to insist upon growing Swiss chard.

1. Tolerant of a huge variety of temperatures.
2. Doesn't bolt.
3. No pests.
4. Pretty.

It's like wonder-lettuce. And as a bonus, it doesn't have the flavor and texture of fish food like kale has.

You don't have leaf miners in your area, do you?

We gave up trying to grow it because of those damn leaf miners.  Even row covers didn't help.

[www.digginfood.com image 475x317]

You've never grown brussels sprouts, have you?

Chard gets some bugs, but less than the bok choi, spinach, and cabbages do. They tolerate frost better than the spinach and choi, and unlike them, don't bolt as soon as May hits. They just camp out under the peppers until September.

And it keeps the rhubarb company.


Tried, and failed miserably. We end up with ants farming the aphids on the brassicas usually, and it isn't really worth it from a yield versus dollars (or calories expended maintaining) standpoint.

Everything else is growing nicely though.

I'd try and take credit, but it's really my wife.  She has done an especially excellent job this year growing things.  We just harvested the garlic, and I had some very nice sized heads, a few almost as bug as my fist.  The onions are ridiculous this year too.

We'd like to save seed too, but don't have a large enough space to grow enough plants for proper genetic diversity among open pollinated plants.
 
2014-07-07 06:48:12 PM  

ElLoco: They're pushing CSAs around here, although 90% of the veggies aren't grown within 200 miles of here.

There are stray fields of various peppers, tomatoes, and cucumbers, but all those are contracted. They pick enough to fill the contracts, then destroy the unharvested leftover crop because the contracts require that nothing from the field can be sold or even given away (as that could potentially encroach on their target markets.) I watched them shred and plow under about 100 acres of perfectly beautiful unharvested bell and jalapeno, and 20+ acres of tomatoes about 3 miles from me last year because of that. Cucumber contracts are usually open ended because there's always some place they can ship extra cukes for big bucks.


They don't donate it to food banks?!?

That sucks pretty damn hard.
 
2014-07-07 06:51:04 PM  

That Guy Jeff: The fact that you can buy tomatoes any time of the year at the grocery store has left us all confused. Tomatoes grow in the summer and that's it. When you eat from your local farm, you have no choice but to eat seasonal options. It's good for us, for the farmers, and the earth.

What a load of shiat. Eating a variety vegetables, year round, regardless of the season, is good for you. And good for the farmers that grow them down in Mexico.


Except full-sized tomatoes taste like a load of crap in the winter. That's why we use only grape or cherry tomatoes in the winter, and just for salads or tarts. Otherwise it's canned tomatoes. Asparagus is my favorite vegetable, but it's really only good for a couple months of the year. The other ten months, the asparagus available are tough, shriveled messes. So, we have frozen or pickled asparagus in the months that it's not so good.

If you buy in season, the produce tastes better and it tends to be cheaper. But, hey, if you want tasteless, expensive produce, I, for one, will not stand in your way. I may laugh at you, but I will not stand in your way.
 
2014-07-07 06:54:43 PM  
I'd rather join one that does 5 things: Meat, potatoes, garlic, and onions. That's it. Nothing more, nothing less. Maybe peppers, but that's it. I don't need pounds of kale, lettuce or tomatoes.
 
2014-07-07 07:00:53 PM  

RoxtarRyan: I'd rather join one that does 5 things: Meat, potatoes, garlic, and onions. That's it. Nothing more, nothing less. Maybe peppers, but that's it. I don't need pounds of kale, lettuce or tomatoes.


That was 4 things. 5 including peppers. Maybe I could have the CSA do basic math for me as well, that'd be neat.
 
2014-07-07 07:00:54 PM  

Smeggy Smurf: Both of the local CSAs cost far more than trips to the store.


I used to think the same thing, but then I tried the two-person CSA, and I found we had more money left over in the grocery pool. I think I figured out why, too. Fewer trips to the grocery store means fewer impulse purchases and non-food items. I just go to the store every couple of weeks to stock up on staples, as opposed to stopping in a couple times a week like I do if I rely on the store for produce. If you're great at making a list and sticking to it, this wouldn't help you, but it worked for me.

/locavore small premium is $26/week here
 
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