Pick Your Own Produce

Apr 27, 2011 Comments Off by EcoFlirt
At last, the season for flip flops, barbecues, and fresh fruit is here! Take advantage of the weather, and visit one of the many pick-your-own-produce farms open for business. If you’re in the Charlotte area, find a farm near you with the Observer’s map to farms in the area.  If you’re outside the area, find a pick-your-own farm in your state.
 
As it’s prime strawberry-picking time (drool), get in the spirit of summer by whipping up new dishes. After you score your haul of berries from the farm, check out Charlotte Fresh’s recipes for strawberry jam and cobbler or their Oh-So-Good Chocolate Strawberry Pie (Charlotte locavores, you’ll dig the rest of that site as well). If jam, cobbler, and pie aren’t reasons enough to get outside and start picking, here are some other reasons to pick your own produce:
 
  • Introduce Kids to Local Food
    Dispel the myth that produce grows from the aisles of Harris Teeter. Show the kiddos how much better fruits and veggies taste when they’re fresh from the source. And isn’t it more fun to eat your fruit and veggies after you’ve picked them yourself? 
     
  • A Breath of Fresh Air
    A day in the sun… It’s fun for kids, sure, but it’s downright therapeutic for busy adults who spend too much time indoors and in front of screens. Go take a breath, feel the sun on your skin, and get some dirt under your nails!
     
  • Cheap Fun
    While the recession lingers, we need to get creative with our social calendars — a day at the farm picking fruits and veggies fits the (inexpensive) bill. You get a fun activity for the day and bring home food for the week. Finally, a time when multitasking isn’t just a euphemism for stressing the heck out.
     
  • Experiment With New Recipes
    Bushels of freshly picked produce are the perfect excuse to play with new recipes. Did you know that desserts made from freshly picked fruits are actually free from calories and fat? (Just roll with me on that one.)

 
Do you have any tips for local pick-your-own produce farms — or better yet, for recipes for using the bushels of produce we’ll bring home?

Eco-Shopping, past
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