Archive | 52 Weeks With My CSA

Week 52 – 52 Weeks Gone By

ekwetzel thinkingWow. Is it really over? A whole year has passed, and what do I have to show for it?

Well, I skipped a lot of blog posts. Especially recently! But, I kept taking pictures, so that has to count for something, right?

My life changed drastically over the past year: bought a house, lost a job, got pregnant and had a baby. I never expected any of these things.

When I started this blog series a year ago, I thought that eating local, organic, sustainably produced food was such an important and monumental task that I’d have plenty of material to blog about for a whole year. Supporting my local farm was “important business” in my mind. Everyone needed to know how it affected our family. I hoped my blog would incite others to eat locally and love fresh farm food. I expected to have these Big Important Ideas that I would share with you. I expected to write something that cut to the heart of the matter.

But, ya know what? Eating farm food is easy. And it’s simple, once you make the change of habit. Eating seasonally makes sense, and it just becomes a way of life. Yeah, there’s a period of transition when everything is new and exciting and a little difficult, but once you’re over that hump, eating is as simple as…well…eating!

phoebe and erin wetzelThere has been a lot of chaos and change in our lives over the last year, and you know what has been one of our constants? The farm food. I drive to the farm once a week and pick up our share of the crop. The farm food is consistently fresh and tasty. The farm food is consistently high quality and organic. I don’t have to check labels and wonder where it came from. I know: it’s local, it’s seasonal, it’s sustainably produced in those fields right out there.

I didn’t expect this. I expected to be ethereal and philosophical about food. But food is real; it’s tangible; it’s tactile. Food is rooted in reality. And my food is real food. I don’t need any labels to tell me that. I don’t need anyone to wax my apples or wax poetic about my pears. I don’t need a fancy box and an advertising campaign to convince me what to eat. I take my silent, simple food for what it is, and I carry on with my life.

csa pnw local harvest organic Week 52

Carrots
Rainier Cherries
Strawberries
Kohlrabi
Snow Peas
Spring Salad Mix
Spinach
Butter Head Lettuce

By ekwetzel
2011-07-09

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Week 49 – Summer in the Raw

salad cheese chickenMy favorite thing about summertime food is how easy it is. Everything is fresh and abundant. Flavors abound everywhere. People get excited about real foods, raw foods and local foods in their most natural states.

And dinnertime gets easier.

Take, for instance this delicious chicken salad we had with our CSA lettuce. Hardly filling in the month of December, but fits perfectly into the context of warm June evenings.

csa terry's berries organic summer produceWEEK 49

Garlic Greens
Asparagus
Radishes
Unknown lettuce-like greens
Bok Choi
Apples
Bag of Spinach
2 MASSIVE heads of Lettuce!

By ekwetzel
2011-06-23

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Week 48 – Things Don’t Stay the Same

bumbo countertop baby newbornIt’s almost been a year since I started blogging about eating food from our CSA, and a lot has happened. We bought a house. We got pregnant and had our first baby. I got laid off and my unemployment checks ran out. And now our baby girl is almost 2 months old.

What were Mr. Wetzel and I even doing a year ago???

I feel like a different person. I feel like the past year of experiences has renewed and refined me. With a blazing fire and a strong wind. Tumultuous times build character…this is true…and chaotic times build your life story.

Life is filled with so many details. So many moments. We look at each other; we sigh; we exchange confidences and dreams. And we commemorate our lives with what we eat.

Let us sit around the dinner table and talk about our day. Let us go out to a restaurant and dream about our future over a bottle of fine wine. Let us go picking for apples and reminisce about our youth.

So much has changed this past year, but one thing that has been a constant is our CSA food. It is consistently healthy and fresh. The local farm remains season in and season out, sustaining our community of produce lovers. The fields produce yield, lie fallow, then are turned over for a new crop. Harvests come and go, and the soil remains underneath, rich dark and mysterious.

phoebe faces smile baby 2 month oldSo too lie our souls.

There is harvest in our lives. Seasons come and go and return. Things change and are renewed and wither away. But all things that define or describe us are rooted in our souls, and it is a man’s soul that remains calm and constant.

Our souls are soil. Our lives spring forth with produce to unveil the rich glories hidden within. Let the circumstances of life pour down on us, that we might drink them up like rain and yield forth a season of life as resplendent as the flowers of the field.

csa spring terry's berries organic WEEK 48

Asparagus
Apples
Baby Bok Choi
Garlic Greens
Braising Mix
Spinach
Bok Choi

By ekwetzel
2011-06-09

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Week 47 – The Joy of Cooking

meal spring home cooking mahi mahi

The Delicious Spread

I. Love. Cooking. And I have missed being able to cook these past few months. Between moving and being pregnant and giving birth and taking care of my newborn, I have been able to do very little cooking since I started this blog post 47 weeks ago. Well…I’ve at least not been able to do nearly as much cooking as I’d have liked.

Since the birth, however, I’ve cooked nothing. Unless you count the rhubarb cobbler from Week 46. Or the leftovers I re-heated in the toaster oven.

Until now. I was finally able to cook. A real meal. With separate dishes. I did the whole thing with a sleeping baby in my ring sling, and I felt Ah-Maz-Ing. The food was yummy, yes, but the sense of satisfaction that I held in my heart was worth far more to me. I felt like I not only accomplished something, but also like I was reclaiming a part of “the old me.” In addition, I was glad to be able to give the gift of a meal to Mr. Wetzel. Cooking is one of our favorite “love languages.”

So: here was our meal in three dishes:
– Mahi Mahi from Trader Joes
– Parmesan Asparagus, adapted from a recipe I found on AllRecipees.com
– Garlic Mashed Potatoes

yummy close up asparagus trader joes mahi mahi mashed

Mahi Mahi, Garlic Mashed Potatoes & Parmesean Asparagus

How to make this meal at home…

Mahi Mahi from Trader Joes: Buy it in the frozen section. Thaw. Bake at 400 for 12ish minutes. I think. (Read the package)

Parmesan Asparagus: Pour the following into large ziplock bag: crushed garlic, olive oil, sea salt, pepper, parmesean. Add asparagus. Shmoosh it around and leave on the counter to drip and drizzle all over itself for a bit. Pour out onto cookie sheet & bake at 400 for 12ish minutes (the same as the fish! woo hoo!)

Q: Erin…how much of each ingredient should I put in the bag?
A: I dunno. Eyeball it.
(If you’re worried, look up “Parmesan Asparagus” on Allrecipes.com for a guideline. I just eyeballed it. And I put in way more Parmesan than called for. Because Wetzels love cheese.)

Garlic Mashed Potatoes: Sliced potatoes & boiled them (about 40 minutes). Separately, diced up the heads to my garlic greens and heated them in copious amounts of butter in a small skillet. Once potatoes were done, I mashed them with a potato masher (you can also use a mixer). Added garlic-butter mixture, plus a little extra butter (to taste) and some milk (about 1/4 cup), to make the potatoes creamier.

YUM!!!!!

week 47 ekwetzel terries berries blogWEEK 47

Radishes
Apples
Baby Bok Choi
Garlic Greens
Asparagus
Spinach
Mixed Spring Greens
Leeks

By ekwetzel
2011-05-30

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Week 46 – Rhubarb In the Raw

rhubarb plant in my yard

The rhubarb plant in my yard

It is ridiculous how expensive rhubarb is.

I mean, seriously? The stuff grows like a weed. And it’s as sour as all get out. Most people have no clue what to do with it. But it’s not exotic; it’s just like the “stand-off-ish” fruit-vegetable* of the produce community. (*Is it a fruit? A vegetable? Do I care enough to wikipedia it? No)

But I loooooove rhubarb. I grew up with rhubarb growing in our yard; the patches grew and grew year after year. We always had plenty of rhubarb. It’s a family joke that we never had enough rhubarb pies, though. As it goes, my dad would get his “one rhubarb pie a year.” I’m not sure how strict that “one a year” rule was, but I remember pie came and went quickly. The rhubarb, however, lasted all summer.

From the time I was quite young, I’d mosey out to the yard with a kitchen knife, slice a stalk off at the base, and decapitate the big leafy head right then and there. Then I’d suck and chew my heart out. Raw rhubarb is so sour, but so poignant and tasty. And I loved it.

When we bought our house last August, one of the little treasures about it was that there was a rhubarb patch already started in the yard. Can you say heaven? I can. Achem: “Rhubarb.”

So, when we got rhubarb in our CSA, I chuckled. I didn’t need any extra. And I gave it away.

Here’s a yummy recipe for rhubarb cobbler, courtesy of my Mom. It’s suuuuper easy:

Yummy Strawberry-Rhubarb Cobbler!

Strawberry Rhubard Cobbler

Mix together the following ingredients in a large/medium bowl:
– 1/4 teaspoon Cinnamon
– 1/4 teaspoon Ginger
– 3/4 cup Sugar
– 2-3 Tablespoons Flour
– 2 sticks Rhubarb
– 1 cup Strawberries
(You can use more strawberries & rhubarb if you want. I often use at least these amounts, and pile on a bit more)

strawberries rhubarb diced sliced

Be sure to slice the rhubarb & strawberries!

mixing up cobbler fruit

Mixing up the fruit & spices.

Mix together the cobbler topping in a separate bowl, out of the following ingredients:
– 1 1/2 cups Instant Oatmeal (or 1 cup regular Oatmeal)
– 1/2 cup Brown Sugar
Then, smash in about 1/4 cup Butter for consistency. I use a fork or my hands.

Place fruit mixture in the bottom of a dish. Top with crumbly cobbler topping.

Bake at 350 F for about 45 minutes.

Prepping cobbler for baking

Prepping cobbler for baking

csa rhubarb speing greensWEEK 46

Braising Mix
Arugula
Rhubarb
Leeks
Garlic Greens
Asparagus
Radishes
Apples
Carrots
Baby Bok Choi

By ekwetzel
2011-05-28

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The Postpartum Weeks: 43-45

Phoebe's toes

Phoebe's little toes, grown on love and local food

When I started this year-long commitment to blogging about our CSA, there were many things I didn’t expect. I didn’t expect to buy a house. I didn’t expect to get laid off. And I didn’t expect to have a beautiful baby girl. But I did. And, while blogging through these changing circumstances has been difficult, it has never been difficult to eat and shop at our CSA. Our farm food has been a constant in the midst of all the other turmoil. It’s delicious, nutritious food that is easy to pick up and easy to afford. It’s just that simple.

These postpartum weeks, I have had little time to shower and cook, much less blog. So this post is a “three in one” for weeks 43, 44 and 45. The pictures of our food take for each week are shown below.

star and heart pancakes

Pancakes that my friend, Amberly, made for us.

One thing that has been a HUGE blessing these weeks is that friends, family and people from church have brought us meals to help us out while we’ve been figuring out how to be parents. I like to think, in some small way, they all became part of us, and part of Phoebe. You see: you are what you eat. Phoebe is made up of everything that I’ve eaten over the past 45(ish) weeks, and now that she is on this side of the womb, she drinks my milk, which is still made up of what I eat. When someone brings us a meal, made with ingredients, time and love, those things become a part of me and a part of my milk, and in turn go into becoming a part of Phoebe. We are all building her together, one bite at a time.

Mmm…I’m hungry!

csa terriy's berries organic spring produceWEEK 43:

Collard Greens
2 Pears
Carrots
2 Leeks
Bowl of Apples
Spinach
2 Bags of Peanuts
Bag of Spring Greens

 

csa terriy's berries organic spring produce

WEEK 44:

Carrots
Parsley
Potatoes
Bok Choi
Apples
Pears
Spinach
Braising Mix
Leeks

 

csa terriy's berries organic spring produceWEEK 45:

Rhubarb
Radishes
Onion
Carrots
Apples
Pears
Red Chard
Parsley
Spinach
Braising Mix
Garlic Greens

By ekwetzel
2011-05-22

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Week 42 – With a Little Help From Our Friends

This week, we did not make a trip to the farm. We were busy doing this:

kiss newborn ekwetzel

And this:

kiss newborn family

And some of this:

sleep with baby

Our friends, Amy and Jesse, went in our stead, picked up the produce and took a picture for us. (Thanks guys!).

I don’t really see much charm in being independent and self-sufficient. Especially not this week, with a new baby in tow. We love community. We love helping and being helped. We love being in connection with others, and opening up our lives to them so that we have the opportunity to form a deep and meaningful relationship with them.

We live a Community Supported Life. We eat from a Community Supported Farm. Community isn’t just about agriculture or organic produce…it’s about heart and life and connection.

Food is just one expression of that bond, and one way in which you can allow yourself to meet the needs of others, and to open yourself up so that others can meet your needs as well.

WEEK 42

week 42 csa terry's berriesCollard Greens
Spinach
Spring Greens
Parsnips
Rutabaga Raab
Garlic Greens
Leeks
Carrots
Apples

By ekwetzel
2011-04-26

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Week 41 – Distracted by Baby’s Presence

baby phoebe wetzelLook who popped into the world this week! It’s baby Phoebe Isobel!

I’ll give you a quick little post about our CSA food this week. I have to say: I am – once again – soooo grateful to have fresh farm food available. I have been ravenous this week since the birth, and it has been amazing to be able to eat fresh, spring salads every day. I devour apples. I want to murder all our carrots in one sitting. I am nursing, so the food passes through me and to my little baby, just as it has been for the past 41 weeks. I’m in the food and the food’s in me; I am the food and the food is me.

And: look at those bright eyes! That fuzzy, hairy head! Grown on the CSA, my friends; this baby cuteness was grown on the CSA.

week 41 terry's berries aprilWEEK 41:

Bok Choi
Potatoes
Carrots
Garlic greens
Apples
Cauliflower
Spring Greens
Lettuce

By ekwetzel
2011-04-17

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