Thursday, March 14, 2013

Living the life

Life in New Orleans has its ups and downs. As I have mentioned in the past, it is a great place and a crappy place. We have learned to just let it be our home and accept the things we like, while ignoring those things that annoy us. 

One of the things we absolutely love is the availability of fresh, local, organic foods. There are a lot of options including farmer's markets, Co-Ops, and CSA's. When we moved last month, we ended up being less than a mile from the best CSA, Hollygrove Market & Farm. It is a fantastic CSA in that you don't have to join in order to get their weekly box and the food is so fresh and seasonal. You can also purchase local meats, eggs, and dairy. We love them :)

I know that not everyone has this kind of access. In a city like New Orleans, I am still amazed that all this is available. We are in the South, where healthy living and eating isn't prized. Somehow, people in New Orleans have forgotten that and are making a growing grassroots effort to bring fresh fruits and veggies to everyone. You can drive through almost any neighborhood and see people growing small plots of crops in their yards and raising chickens. In fact, in our old neighborhood and our new one, we have neighbors that had free roaming chickens! There are also people creating gardens in empty lots. I love this and hope it spreads to every single abandoned lot in the whole city - imagine that!! 

There are those that think organic/local foods are so expensive and hard to live off. For the next few weeks, I will be posting what we get in our CSA food box and what we make for dinner each night. We have a budget, too! We aren't rich and we both work, so there is a lot of nights where it would be easier to give in the towel, pick up some takeout, and eat garbage. I don't want our daughter to grow up like that. 

So, here's the picture of what we got this week from Hollygrove.

With each dinner, I will post the recipe and what it costs to make it. In places where we already had the item in our pantry, I will still do my best to list the price that I paid for it.

Tonight, we made a yummy soup that I would recommend to anyone! Hubby loved it and is eating the rest for lunch tomorrow. It makes four servings, but could easily be doubled. I didn't add any grain source, but it would be awesome with quinoa, rice, pasta, or just some bread on the side.

Berman Soup

2 links of deer sausage - free from a friend
2 small sweet potatoes, unpeeled and cubed - CSA
1 small organic onion - about 50 cents
small amount of coconut oil
bunch of mustard greens, roughly chopped into large pieces - CSA
1 can organic garbanzo beans - pantry, but they cost about $1.39
1 quart chicken stock - pantry, but it cost $1.99

Saute deer sausage in stock pot. Add in coconut oil, sweet potatoes and onion and saute until soft. Add greens and broth. Saute about 20 minutes or until all flavors mix well together. Season with sea salt and pepper. We used the pressure cooker, so it was done even sooner.

Any of these items could be replaced with whatever you have on hand. We would have saved money if we had used dry beans that we soaked, but we didn't have the time and already had the beans. We would also have saved money if we had homemade stock on hand, but we have used all of ours. Someday, we will have a larger freezer and will have more room to store these sort of things. 

This would also make a yummy vegetarian meal with veggie stock and no meat. 

Total cost not including the CSA: $4.89 


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