Posts Tagged ‘Barbara Kingsolver’

I blame Barbara Kingsolver for the current (jam-packed) state of my refrigerator.

You see, in February, I read Kingsolver’s Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, and was fascinated by her account of her family’s attempt to eat totally local (and fresh, and organic) for a year. They raised chickens and turkeys, grew all their own veggies and some of their own fruit, canned and preserved a LOT in the late summer, and went without many of the gas-guzzling luxuries (such as fresh bananas, and strawberries in winter) that we all enjoy. (They also frequented local farmer’s markets, made their own cheese…the list goes on and on.)

I live in Abilene, Texas, which is borderline desert – we have mesquite instead of cactus, but not much else grows wild out here. It’s definitely not as verdant as Kingsolver’s Virginia farm. And we don’t own any land. So going/growing totally local is not currently an option for us – but we did join the Brazos River Farm CSA this spring. (For those who don’t know, CSA stands for Community-Supported Agriculture, and you pay a farmer up front in the winter for a weekly or bi-weekly box of produce during the growing season. The farmer can use the money to buy seeds, supplies, etc. and live off during the winter months, and then you get fresh, organic produce later on.)

To say we weren’t quite prepared for the amount and variety of produce would be an understatement. Our first box contained SEVEN different kinds of greens – only 3 of which (green lettuce, red lettuce, Swiss chard) I could identify on sight. We had to Google image the rest (kale, bok choy, mustard greens and something else – I can’t remember), and we wound up throwing them into a LOT of salads. (We also got baby radishes – yum! – and green onions.)

Two weeks ago, I expected our second box to be full of salad greens again – I was getting used to the salad thing, and I kind of liked it. Imagine my surprise to find kale, bok choy, onions and TWO DOZEN squash and zucchini!

We’ve been eating them every possible way – sliced, grated, sauteed, with pasta, on pizza, grilled, in salad, in zucchini bread, even in zucchini chocolate-chip cookies. (It’s like the ways to eat shrimp in Forrest Gump.) This week we’re trying them stuffed – because we just got a new box yesterday, and there are 20 MORE in there. (The herbs are starting to come in, too – yesterday’s box had mint, basil, rosemary, sage and oregano.)

I’m truly amazed at the abundance “Farmer Dan” is coaxing from this dry West Texas soil. And enjoying our fresh, local, organic produce, and even having fun experimenting with new recipes. (I can’t wait for tomato season.) But if anyone has any good squash and zucchini recipes, please send them my way – so my poor husband doesn’t flee the kitchen after being served zucchini pasta yet again.


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