Monday, June 4, 2012

Eating Local


Last winter I participated in a challenge with some other bloggers to eat one meal each week made from local, seasonal ingredients called the Dark Days of Winter Challenge. (My posts are under the Dark Days Food label).

Some of us decided to breakout and continue with the challenge throughout the summer, and the Southern SOLE Food Challenge was born--"Southern" because we're mainly located in the southern part of the U.S., and "SOLE" meaning Sustainable, Organic, Local, and/or Ethical.  My focus will be on local and seasonal food. Although some farmers don't have an official organic label, I know they're using sustainable methods. You can read more about this challenge and participants on my Food Challenges tab.

This challenge began last Friday, June 1, and goes through the end of October. Here's what my first locally-sourced meal looked like:

omelet ingredients from farmers' market and my garden

Asparagus is in season, so I picked up a bunch, as well as some other local ingredients, and made an omelet. The onion stems, rosemary, and purple pepper are all from my own garden. The asparagus, tomatoes, and eggs came from a farmers' market. As I learned from the Dark Days Challenge, some farmers' markets in my area allow for re-sellers and brokers, and I don't buy my food from those anymore. Farmers' market prices are usually higher, so why am I going to pay higher prices for food that doesn't even go directly to the farmers who made it?


I was so concerned with the main ingredients that I completely forgot to pick up locally-made milk and butter, so I'll have to stock those for future meals. I'll have my own home-grown vegetables to use once the garden starts producing, and I like summer fruits and veggies much more than winter ones. I definitely think the SSFC will be easier and more fun that the winter challenge in that sense.

19 comments:

  1. I do try and eat as much local food as possible, says she who bought cucumbers today knowing full well they must have come from a long way away - now I'm feeling guilty. You on the otherhand can be very proud of your omlette.

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    1. Thanks Liz! And don't feel guilty , that's certainly not the intent with this post, and I'm not a purist by any means--I love my citrus and other foods that come from many miles away.

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    2. My cucumber vines are flowering like crazy and I tiny little 1" cucumbers starting to form. I hope to be rolling in them soon!

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    3. That's great Emily! I hope I get a lot of cukes this year. The pepper plants I overwintered have popped out two green peppers so far. I hope this bodes well for the little garden. :)

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  2. I think we all have times when we pick up things we know aren't local but we really want them.

    The watermelon I got last week was probably from the Carolinas, since I think Virginia hasn't gotten any yet.

    Love the omelette. We seem to eat eggs more often with these greens we keep getting.

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    1. I haven't seen watermelon yet in VA either, but at the Penn Quarter market I saw a few small yellow squash!

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  3. great challenge....I hope to learn more about trying this in the future.

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    1. Thanks Donna! Check out the page I wrote about this challenge and you'll see what some of the others are making too.

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  4. This is wonderful! We get a local co-op vegetable share from May through November. It supplies us with more than enough locally grown organic veggies and some fruits for 7 months. The cost for all that food is less than $200 total, because our HMO reimburses us for a large portion of the cost. It's healthy and a great deal. I applaud you!

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    1. Wow, that's a GREAT deal! I had no ideas HMOs could or would do that. That's fantastic!

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  5. Mmmm, that looks delicious! I'm curious, what's the story with the ripe tomatoes in asparagus season? Are they greenhouse-grown? Did they taste as good as summer tomatoes?

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    1. Sharon, yes, greenhouse/hydroponically grown in both VA and MD, and they don't taste bad.

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  6. Angela! Your omelet looks wonderful. As I read your post, I realize I completely forgot to give credit to the dairy where I get my milk. I will go add that in the post. I use eggs a lot around here. It is so easy with all the great summer veg. Beautiful meal!

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    1. Thanks Emily! Yep, so not totally local because of the butter and splash of milk. Next week!

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  7. Mmm, the omelet looks delicious. Good luck with your challenge this summer.

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  8. Looks good Angela, good to know you have extended the food challenge to summer as well. Good luck!

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  9. Beautiful omelette! Perfect way to ring in the 1st SSFC challenge!

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