Farm-to-Table Tips: Experience the Freshness
Getting one's hands on meat and vegetables that are actually fresh and right off the farm is a complete sensory experience. Bruising the leaves that are still attached to a garlic bulb, or smelling the earthiness of carrots with a little dirt still on them is a foreign experience to most Americans. However, there is a lot of fresh produce out there if one knows where to look. The trick is getting it on your table on a weekly basis.
Many different ways to get that farm fresh produce are available, ranging from visiting the farm itself to joining co-ops, shopping at farmers markets or roadside produce stands, buying it off the back of the farmer's truck or receiving weekly organic-produce boxes. With a little local research and some experimentation, figuring out what will get that fresh produce from the ground to your plate isn't that difficult. And, it may be cheaper than one's usual way of shopping but it may be a little more expensive. Either way it's worth the effort. If it really is fresher produce, all that money will be saved in the produce that gets eaten, and not thrown out because it spoiled too quickly.
Other tactics can add additional freshness while spicing up your daily routine. Buying fresh herbs in pots and cutting them as needed is cheaper and less effort than buying the little packages offered by the grocery store. A large number of sprout varieties, including bean sprouts a.k.a. mung beans, alfalfa sprouts, radish and broccoli sprouts, lentils, and wheatgrass, are available as bags of seeds at the local health food stores. These can be sprouted on the kitchen counter in just a few days, and many of the sprouters that are available for purchase come with tiers, so that they can be staggered and harvested as needed. Micro-greens can also be grown in this manner.
With a little time and creativity, fresh produce can make a huge impact on your daily grind. And remember, the value of the improvement in the quality of your life is priceless. So check out the local harvests. You can improve your health and please your taste buds.
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