I find myself looking forward to Tuesday mornings, my organic veggie box delivery day. The box is usually sat outside my door waiting for me, like one never-ending Christmas present. The driver starts deliveries at 6am so its often here before I wake up, but today it was late. It is very cold and things are frozen, slowing everybody down. Using a box scheme has been a wonderful way to shift how we eat and our perspective on food. We now eat in sync with the seasons, eat more organic and perhaps most importantly, support local farmers. Having been a vegetarian for something like 14 years or so, I had never (knowingly) eaten Celeriac prior to having this box delivery [embarrassed smile].. Its a fairly common British vegetable, rather gnarly and brainy looking, but apparently originated in the Mediterranean basin. Since its part of the celery family- which I have never been a fan of, it doesn't surprise me that I never encountered it before now. I am now using celery more in soups these days and Celeriac chips dipped into baked Camembert is heavenly.
|The lovely Celeriac|
Now we enjoy purple sprouted broccoli, every colour-shape-variety of cabbage, turnips, celeriac, beet root (admittedly still a challenge), leeks, mushrooms, squashes, etc. Each week a recipe is included to help you along, because obviously there's lots of folks coming out of vegetable ruts. If we were meat eaters, locally produced organic meats are also available on the scheme and we also get a dozen organic eggs each week. It gives me a chance to talk about the veggies with the kids-- they usually want to have a look in the box before they leave for school. Its teaching them about what grows around here, and when. The veg comes to us with the soil still on, and they can handle it and know this is how its meant to look. The kids often cringe and complain its dirty, but I tell them we just have to wash it off.
This is also part of my plan to reduce supermarket consumption. We haven't been able to return to dairy milk again fully (so don't take advantage of the local dairy farm) we still rely on soy milk, and we like our Quorn products -which means we haven't been able to make the supermarket break completely. I make the effort to visit the local market, and topping up weekly in independent shops. Several years ago we were on the box scheme but somehow drifted away from it, and back in the states, we lived near a lovely organic farm which delivered veggies on a box scheme. It seems that now it has sunk in, its feels right on a personal and political level and I enjoy it. For children with autism, eating vegetables that have not been chemically sprayed, and that have more available nutrients is a necessity. As vegetarians where vegetables make up the bulk of our diet it is also a necessity. Sure it does cost a little more to eat organic, but I just balance it out by tightening the budget elsewhere, because our good health is non-negotiable.