Monday, September 10, 2012

2012 NY Locavore Challenge: Days 8 and 9

I'm back after quite the busy weekend! Saturday was Day 8 of the Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York's (NOFA-NY) 2012 Locavore Challenge. We really kicked the day off right, eating an almost-entirely local breakfast, and then heading out to Harvest Moon Farm and Orchard for our first apple picking trip of the season!
I've been going to this farm (which was formerly the Outhouse Orchard) since I was a little girl, and it's better than ever! The trees were filled to the brim with apples, waiting to be picked. The smell of cider donuts was wafting through the air. And the farm store was stocked with all sorts of local goodies including dairy products (local ice cream!), honey, maple syrup, tons of produce in addition to apples, freshly-baked breads and pies, and assorted cuts of meat and poultry.
My favorite part of our orchard adventure was seeing how happy Dylan was to eat an entire apple (which he's never even attempted before...thank goodness he got some more teeth before apple-picking season!) I love knowing that I can share the joys of eating local food with my little guy from such an early age.


We weren't home for much of Sunday because we were down in NYC participating in the Komen 5k Race for the Cure. I'm pretty darn proud of myself because I got up early enough to make us some 100% local brown-bag breakfasts to enjoy on our 5:30AM train ride down to the city. We had breakfast sandwiches made with local bread, butter, eggs, cheese and tomatoes, and I also packed us some apples that I picked on Saturday.

I'm even more proud of my dear friend Amanda Crain and her mom Andrea who were picked to be the Komen Foundation's co-survivor and survivor of the year! (You can read their absolutely amazing story here.) The day was a reminder to me that part of the reason why I jumped on the locavore band-wagon in the beginning was to improve my diet...something which can help decrease my own risk of getting breast cancer. I have a family history of breast cancer so I'm going to do everything possible to improve my odds for avoiding this disease myself!

Day 8 Challenge: Shop at a Farmers Market or Farm-Stand
The real challenge here was picking WHICH farmers market or farm-stand to go to! We ended up at Harvest Moon, but I would have also loved to go to the market at Gossett Brothers Nursery or the John Jay Homestead, or visited the u-pick garden at Hilltop Hanover Farm.

Day 8 Food: Grapes
I bought some local grapes at Muscoot Farmers Market last Sunday, and I have to admit, they're just not my thing. I LOVE the flavor of local grapes, but all the seeds make them a total pain to eat (plus there was no way to share them with Dylan who is too young to navigate the seeds, and boy did that make him mad as grapes are one of his favorite foods!) I'll probably just avoid buying grapes, and look forward to eating them as a treat when they're served at other peoples houses (which happens fairly often.)

Day 9 Challenge: Try Food Preservation
The race in the city meant I didn't have time to do any food preserving yesterday, but my freezer is already filling up with frozen summer goodies, including strawberries and blueberries I picked myself at Samascott Orchards, and sweet corn from my CSA from Roxbury Farm.

Day 9 Food: Pickles
There are two ways to approach this one...buy pickles from a farmers market - which I've totally done in the past, from Pickle Licious - or make pickles yourself. I've never canned pickles, but I have made quick-pickled vegetables (including cucumbers, radishes and carrots from our CSA). I'll be sure to share the recipe next time I'm pickling something!

Over the weekend I:
  • Ate/drank local milk, eggs, feta, potatoes, sweet red peppers, onions, honey, apple cider, cider donuts, apples, bread, beer, tomatoes, cheddar, and butter (15 different foods).
  • Bought some grown-in-the-US, roasted-in-NY peanut butter from Once Again Nut Butter.
  • Picked my first apples of the season!
  • FINALLY started reading The Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan....I'm only a few pages in and it's already life-changing
I hope y'all had a wonderful weekend full of amazing local food!

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