I was very fortunate to grow up on a ten-acre farm with an awesome variety of seasonal pickings. The change in seasons was marked by the surrounding trees. An almond tree bloomed outside my window as soon as the sun broke through the winter sky a few warm days in a row. The only time we saw snow in the California Central Valley was when a strong wind blew through the orchards in full bloom.
By April/May, our first summer fruit came. Cherries, glorious cherries, could be harvested for a few short weeks. In June, apricots arrived, which led to more than one apricot fight with the goopy, fallen fruit. Not a pretty picture.
In June/July we had nectarines, my all time favorite summer fruit. Until peaches arrived in August that is. It’s impossible to argue with the perfection of a sun-warmed peach picked straight from the tree, so juicy you have to eat it barefooted and dripping in the grass.
Now that I live in a metropolitan area, the closest I come to enjoying fresh summer fruit, besides my now biweekly produce box from Farm Fresh to You, is going to the farmer’s market. The good news is I work only a few blocks from a one. The bad news is it closes from October-April. But here we are again, hello May!
My loot for this first week:
Sugar snap peas – $3.00 / 1 pound (split the pound with a lovely friend)
Blood oranges (I think they should be called purple oranges. They’re too pretty to be called something so visceral)- $2.00 / pound
Pink grapefruit – $1.00 / pound
Cherries – $4.00 / pound
Native grain bread – $4.25 / loaf
Don’t tell anyone, but I’m a closet vegetarian. I don’t eat meat for the first two meals of the day. I don’t think I could ever be a full vegetarian. For one thing, I like meat. For another, I wouldn’t want to be rude in imposing my dietary wants (not needs) on anyone who was gracious enough to cook for me.
Most importantly, I could never get away with full on vegetarian meals every single day with my rather carnivorous family. Did I mention my almost three year old’s favorite food in the world is sausage? And if I won’t make special meals for my wanna-be picky kids, then why would I make a separate meal for myself? But, that doesn’t mean I can’t try to turn the focus of our meals towards vegetation.
I’m always trying to figure out new lunch combinations that I can make at work. It’s pretty challenging to eat fresh with limited equipment-microwave, toaster oven, and steak knife. (I’m seriously considered bringing in a cutting board and chef knife.)
This is my new favorite veggie lunch wrap:
1 spinach tortilla
2 thin slices of brie
1 handful sugar snap peas
1 handful grated carrot
a couple of teaspoons of Drew’s All Natural Shitake Ginger dressing