“You, as a food buyer, have the distinct privilege of proactively participating in shaping the world your children will inherit.” – Joel Salatin, American farmer, lecturer, and author
I think about the words of Joel Salatin while I unpack the weeks vege box from Streamside Organics with my toddler, laughing as he hauls out handfuls of pink yams, a bouquet of pungent parsley, and attempts to move a blushing Grey Crown pumpkin, finally just getting in the box for a better vantage point. Without sounding preachy or sanctimonious, I care deeply about the world our children will inherit, as I imagine that most of you reading this do, too. Your choice to support this local small farm when sourcing your weekly vegetables has a positive and far reaching impact.
By choosing the organic Agria potatoes you pull from your box, you're skipping the pesticides and fungicides conventionally grown potatoes are bathed in. That fact alone should make your potato and leek soup extra lovely, but honestly, they just taste better than spuds sitting on the supermarket shelf from goodness knows where. Be sure to keep your potatoes unwashed and in a cool, dark spot- they're so alive they're likely to begin growing eyes if they sense a bit of heat and moisture. They make excellent soups, wedges, mashes, roasties, or breakfast hash.
How about that striking green cavolo nero- not only is it chock full of nutrients, fresh from the field, but it helped to pay a living wage directly to the farm folk who grew it. Paying farmers and workers a realistic wage is paramount, and keeping money in the community is a bonus of a local farm. I like knowing that I'm tied to a system that allows those fine folk braving frosty mornings and muddy rows to harvest this Tuscan kale are also able to afford good food on their tables. Try simply braised cavolo nero to add nutrients and colour to any meal, or take a leaf from one of our meals this week and sautèe with local garlic and mushrooms topping socca pizzas. Cavolo Nero should be washed as you use it; if you wash and refrigerate, it’s bound to turn yellowy and wilt faster.
Those chioggia beetroots that look like candy or psychedelic art once sliced? They're grown on a farm that employs regenerative farming practices. Organic is awesome, but huge monoculture fields of organic produce aren't the answer. Supporting small farms that are building soil and a healthy, biodiverse ecosystem through those regenerative practices are the best. Try the beautiful beetroot thinly sliced and marinated in vinaigrette, added to a salad, or top a savoury tart for eye-catching colours. If your beetroot have greens attached lop them off and keep separately.
Snapshot of a few meals we loved based around the vegetable box this week:
- A gooey wholefood version of mac n' cheese with spelt pasta and a pumpkin-based cheese sauce
- Socca pizza, topped with sauteed cavolo nero, kale, local mushrooms, and a garlic cream dollop
- Roasted beetroot, yam, potato, onion and pumpkin, with miso mayo and mesclun on the side
- Root veg mashed with parsley and yoghurt, with a quick but delicious cheaters version of beetroot bourguignon
- Roasted carrot soup with cumin and toasted hazelnuts
- Silverbeet omelette and spiced breakfast potatoes
- Leftover summer raspberry and beetroot slice
- Simple salad with apples and lemon dressing
- Tacos, always tacos- with daikon slaw
- Veggie burritos with rollover roasted vegetables, chipotle rice and mmm avocado
- Savoury scones with caramelised onions and peppercorn
What are YOU making with your fresh vegetables this week?
Have questions about how to store, prep or eat a vegetable from your box? Need inspiration for something new to do with the tried-and-true? Made one of the shared recipes? Created something new? Let us know! Message or tag @streamsideorganics and @nakedcakesandwholefoods
Created by Elena Keir of Naked Cakes and Wholefoods