by Melanie A. Albert, intuitive cooking expert, author, speaker, Founder & CEO Experience Nutrition Group, LLC
This evening I had the wonderful opportunity to participate in the Living an Edible Landscape Life with urban gardener Joan Baron, sponsored by the Scottsdale Green Building Program.
Today, Joan Baron shared key tips to start a home garden in Arizona (which I’ll share in another blog). We also cooked a simple salad with Joan’s just-harvested greens, 3-ingredient salad dressing (Meyer lemon, extra virgin olive oil, sea salt, plus fresh mint), and a beautiful veggie saute with green onions, spring garlic, tomatoes, golden and striped beets, carrots, and watermelon radish.
During the evening we discussed the value of shopping for local, in-season food at farmers’ markets and CSA’s (Community Supported Agriculture). I promised a few of the attendees at the workshop that I’d blog about farmers’ markets and CSA’s…
Excerpt from “A New View of Healthy Eating”
Shop at Farmers’ Markets in Your Area
As demand for locally grown fruit and vegetables has increased, farmers’ markets have steadily grown in number throughout the last few decades. According to the USDA Farmers Market Directory, in June 2017 there were 8,687 registered farmers’ markets as compared to 1,744 in 1994—an increase of more than 7,000 in 23 years. In addition to the USDA Farmers Market Database, another source to find farmers’ markets in your area is http://www.localharvest.org.
Favorite Phoenix Farmers’ Markets
We are so fortunate in the Phoenix area, as we have farmers’ market across the Valley of the Sun every Saturday, and even have a few mid-week markets. I recommend shopping at a farmers’ market that’s convenient and to getting to know your local farmers.
I live in the South Phoenix area and my favorite markets are:
- Downtown Phoenix Openair Market, Central and McKinley, Phoenix, Saturday, 8am-1pm
- Scottsdale Old Town Farmers’ Market, 1st Street and N. Brown, Saturday, 8am-1pm
- Uptown Farmers’ Market, Central and Bethany Home, Phoenix, Saturday and Wednesday 9am-1pm, Wednesday, 9am-1pm
- Ahwatukee Market, 48th Street and Warner, Tempe, Sunday, 9am-1pm
In addition to farmers’ market it’s great to buy a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture).
Excerpt from “A New View of Healthy Eating
Commit to a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) Share
Developed in the 1960’s in Japan, CSA programs are designed to build a relationship between the farmer and the community. At the beginning of each season, farmers sell CSA memberships to consumers. Each week, customers receive a sampling of produce that is available from one farmer or a group of local farmers. CSAs cost $25 to $35 per week for six to eight weeks and are perfect for those of us who wish to experiment with unique, interesting, locally grown food. Farmers distribute CSA’s at farms, farmers’ markets, and convenient pick-up locations, such as yoga studios. Some farms even deliver CSA’s right to your home.
Great CSA’s in Phoenix
Since I primarily shop with our local Phoenix farmers for both my personal cooking and cooking classes, I’m very familiar with our local organic small farmers. A few of my farmer friends offer CSA’s. If you’re in the Phoenix area, check out the CSA’s from these farmers and know that you do not need to live near their farms, as they have various pick-up locations around the Valley.
- Maya’s Farm, South Phoenix. My favorites: Fresh herbs, flowers, edible flowers. http://www.mayasfarm.com
- Steadfast Farm, Queen Creek. My favorites: Yellow and orange carrots, Romanesco. http://www.stead-fast-farm.com
- Blue Sky Organic Farms, Litchfield. My favorites: Dinosaur kale, dandelion greens. blueskyorganicfarms.com
ACTION: I invite you to shop at your local farmers’ markets and/or support your local farmers’ by participating in a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture.)