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Abrazos! xox Penny

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

The Red,White and Food: Sharing

This beautifully weathered box from a C.S.A. is full of personality and seasonal goodies. Some weekly "shares" arrive in baskets, some in boxes and some are "grab and go". There are veggie shares, egg shares, fruit and flower shares, and shares of whatever the farmer has to offer. Community Supported Agriculture programs "share" their farm's bounty with members and in addition to farmers markets and food clubs, are a very popular and fun way to eat delicious local food and support local farmers. 

What caught my attention recently was an article about a C.S.A. started by a 13, now 14 year old. I love the two younger full of creativity, vision and gumption. This particular young woman has a wonderful story which is perfect for The Red, White and Food.

Last summer, at 13, she decided to spend her summer vacation farming a half acre of vacant land. Originally, she had visions of her own farm stand, but her parents thought that was not the best idea for a young girl. A creative go-getter, she grew all kinds of veggies and sold "shares" to 6 families, forming her own C.S.A. This summer she has about 15 kinds of veggies (and each veggie has several varieties!), herbs, and flowers. There is a whole group of families involved as regular shareholders and several neighbors involved as barter-type shareholders, swapping out their eggs and milk for her veggies. 

One of the most intriguing crops she has also came from a neighborly "share" that, in turn, came from another "share"! Her neighbor, a WWII veteran, got the seeds for his tomato plants from a German guard in a prison hospital. For 60 years he has grown those tomatoes and now, has shared them with her. Fabulous!!!

I was so taken with her story that I called her and talked to her mom for quite awhile (she was in the garden!) and they were gracious enough to share one of her recipes. Here is a big The Red, White and Food thank you...for sharing so much!

To find a C.S.A near you, click on this link:

Minty Green Bean Salad...deliciously refreshing and summer-y

1 pound fresh green beans
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chopped onions
1-2 sprigs fresh mint leaves
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1 teaspoon snipped basil
1/4 teaspoon prepared mustard
1/2 clove garlic, minced
sea salt and fresh black pepper

Cook green beans until tender but still crisp and drain. Put in a medium bowl and mix with garlic, onion and mint. In a small glass jar, mix olive oil, vinegar, garlic, basil, mustard, sea salt and pepper. Shake well. Pour over green beans and toss well. Let stand 1 hour to let flavors blend.

Note: When I made this, I made twice the amount of dressing to use again and added in a little more basil and mint.

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