Over the past few months, I have been happily unemployed <3, and this has opened up many opportunities and challenges when it comes to buying amazing food. The challenges have been mostly around eating raw junk food (e.g. chocolate, fruit/nut bars)….because I had to cut back. BUT, the opportunities have been awesome and full <3
One of the biggest opportunities I have had is doing a workshare at Tait Farms–a local, organic farm located 10 minutes from my house in central Pennsylvania. In a workshare, you work in exchange for produce. It’s pretty simple. At Tait, I work 4 hours every Wednesday morning (9am-1pm) and I get to take fresh produce home with me. This is a win-win for me. I have always wanted to have the experience of working on a farm. I find it to be extremely meditative and relaxing; plus, my body gets to move and I am learning valuable gardening skills.
Last Wednesday, I worked for 4 hours weeding and transplanting tomato plants. This may sound boring, but it was like I had meditated for hours. So relaxing.
And I brought home: arugula, scallions, thyme, green kale, purple kale, chives, mustard salad greens, and potatoes. Basically, all of my springtime greens for the week 🙂 It is spring here in Pennsylvania…so the summer fruits and veggies will be here in a few months. And because the farmers were pulling up the kale plants in order to prepare the soil for another plant, I was able to take as much kale as I liked. Same thing with the mustard salad greens 🙂 I am thinking I will make kale chips 🙂
And last week at the farm, we planted bokchoy, kale, cabbage, and other brassica plants. That was way more physical, but I got to take home: a ton of spinach, tender kale tops, nettles, radishes, arugula, chives, scallions, beets, potatoes, thyme, watermelon radishes, and celery root 🙂 Some of these foods were “seconds”…which means that the farm isn’t able to sell them because they aren’t pretty looking. But, I love “seconds” because they are cheaper or even free.
If you are interested in doing a workshare, simply do a online search for local farms in your area. A great website to find your nearest organic farm is www.localharvest.org/csa. Or do a Google™ search for organic farms in your city or county.