The Beet Challenge

A few months ago, Groupon was offering a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) box at a great low price and I took advantage of the deal so I could see what it was like. I decided to order it last week when I really needed things to just be handled and I’m glad I did. It was fantastic!

The box of produce was from Full Circle Farms. I had always heard that it’s kind of a gamble, you never know what you’re going to get. And in a way, that’s kind of the fun thing about getting a CSA – it pushes you to try food you might never purchase or cook on your own. I had also heard that even though Full Circle Farm is a local farm and business, you often get produce in your box from other states and sometimes other countries, from farms that are affiliated with Full Circle Farms. That aspect of the box always made me a little hesitant about ordering one.  I appreciate the partnerships, but the reason I would order a CSA box is to support farms in my community and to eat food that was locally grown. However, I was delighted to discover that the Full Circle Farms CSA program offers a lot of features on their website that allow you to customize your order. I could make my box as local as I wanted.

And that’s exactly what I did. A few days before my scheduled delivery, I was notified that I could log in to my online account and modify my order. They give you a list of everything that is set to come in your box and you can then replace those items with other things. There is a drop down list of things to choose from and beside each item is the farm or location where it will come from. I customized my box  so that everything I got was locally grown.

My box arrived before 6:00am Monday morning and was packed with delicious, organic produce like arugula, red potatoes, turnips, carrots, and pears. If you asked me if I would order again, I would say yes, but on a “as per needed” basis. For those times like when I’m out of town and know I’m going to get back on Sunday night and not have anything to eat that week. Or for those times when I really only have the energy to log in and shop for organic produce with the click of a button. And it is a good value. But, it’s a lot of perishable food for one little girl. And if I wasn’t such a strategic cook, I would have had a lot of wasted food on my hands. Plus, for me, there’s nothing better than the energy I feel at the farmers’ market, buying food face to face, in a bustling community of foodies just like me.

Finally, I have to reveal something about myself you probably don’t know – my exemptions. Yep, the food I put a permanent hold on to never receive in my CSA box. My very best friend was shocked to see some of the food I shunned. And the one I feel the most disappointed about is the beets. How can a gardener not like beets? I would love to be able to happily eat my own home-grown beets, but I detest them. And I try to like them. Whenever I am at a potluck or dinner party where beets make an appearance, I wholeheartedly give them a chance. But, besides the greens, I remain a beet-hater to this day. I’m going make that one of my new year’s resolutions – to really give beets a try. I’m going to make it a point to try as many different beet recipes this year as I can and hell, I might even grow them!  So, I am putting this out there to you, my friends. Do you have any beet recipes that will make me a convert? Please send them my way!

10 thoughts on “The Beet Challenge

  1. Delia

    Stacey, I’m glad to hear that you liked Full Circle and you were able to customize your order. I mention this because I also purchase a box with a coupon last week, just to try it. I hope to use it in January, although they seem to have a limited selectiong on locally grown produce at that time of the year. Anyhow, I look forward to growing and eating more organic food this following year. Cheers to eating well (and locally)! 🙂

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  2. Dawn

    I am with you on the beets!! I’m open to trying them in new ways in places other than my kitchen from time to time, but I never seem to like them. I had the same concerns with FCF – but I tailor my box too to include only local produce – and I plan on the weekends how to incorporate everything into our weekly meals. It is a lot of produce to handle for one person, though. I do like that they have the green grocer option – I can always get my yogurt, eggs, and a few other supplies that way. 🙂

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  3. Meg

    I’ve been with Full Circle Farms for over a year now. Love it! This time of year, true local stuff is a little limited, but after meeting Andrew and others from the farm, I’m certain of their commitment to sustainable farming, and I figure sustainable organic is better than costco vats of oranges….

    And in their added groceries? Truffled salt. Oh yes, I’m in love….and it’s yummy on roasted beets. 🙂

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