Hand’s down, the BEST thing about this summer has been the opportunities we’ve had to eat locally, organically and on a budget (my favorite). Our garden is absolutely overflowing with fresh vegetables, and I have to admit, there is no prouder moment than harvesting that first batch of self-grown produce. Going out into the garden and picking what we eat means: A. We’re not technically paying for food and B. The vegetables are insanely fresh C. We’re not harming the environment by hauling our food in from across the globe. All three reasons make us EXTREMELY happy and the success of the garden this year has been a complete blessing. And our wallets are extra happy. Our weekly Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods bill has been slashed in half since most of our produce is pickable this time of the year. Basil, lettuce, bok choy and kale (oh, the gorgeous kale!), grow back almost instantly after being plucked, which is awesome. The peppers, broccoli, cucumbers and tomatoes are slowly rolling out one at a time, by the patience you have to have to wait for the bounty makes the reward that much more delicious 🙂
And our decision to split a farm share with Arikka and Derek make have been our most brilliant plan. Mainstone Farm is Wayland was a great discovery, and since early July have had ample amounts of organically grown veggies available for a dirt-cheap prices. 75 cent cukes, 40 cent non-GMO ears of corn, $1 per pound potatoes and a case (yes, I said a case!) of tomatoes for just ten bucks.
The insanely low price of great quality food is not the point though. Even if it were expensive, it would be worth it. To have a local and organic hard-working farm-base near our home is outstanding. To be able to speak to the people who grow the produce from start to finish and build a relationship with them, is just another element of why eating locally is so important. It brings shopping, eating and cooking to a different level. It makes me prouder of what goes into and comes out of our kitchen.
(OVERHEAD VIEW OF THE GARDEN)
(FIRST CUKE OF THE SEASON!
(COLLARD GREENS IN FULL BLOOM)
(A DAY’S HAUL FROM THE GARDEN)
(WHAT $25 WILL GET YOU AT MAINSTONE FARM)
So…what’s this all about? It’s about two friends, and one mutal decision to shed their carnivorous ways and resist eating animals after learning the truths about factory farming. This is our documentation of cooking and experimenting daily-where you’ll find our messes and successes in the kitchen in our attempts at staying meat-free. So stay tuned for yummy recipes, helpful tips and interesting information as we try to hold true to our Vegetarian Pact!
Throughout my life, I had been ADDICTED to chicken. Chicken nuggets, chicken parmigiana, chicken sausage…anything hailing from that bird, I devoured without hesitance. Red meat, on the other hand, I was repulsed by. Burgers and hot dogs made me gag and I would rather starve then touch a morsel of pork. I found this to be an acceptable deal, figuring I was only eating birds, not cute little piggies-what’s the big deal?
Only it was a big deal. After a year of seeking more education and knowledge on the food I had always considered “healthy”, I was exposed to the horrors of abuse inflicted on cows, pigs, and yes-my beloved poultry. Learning about what innocent and helpless animals had to suffer through just so I could have a hearty meal every night made me sick to my stomach. So what was more important to me? Frying up dead carcasses every night, or getting creative in the kitchen and finding healthier alternatives that not spared the lives of animals, but was better for myself and the environment, too. And so, with the help of my best friend, I began my quest for vegetarian cleansing.</