I don't think I'm alone when I say that I struggle with planning meals and making sure I eat enough vegetables. I even devised a meal plan last year which I thought would solve all my problems, but so far it's been hit or miss. I realized that it takes me forever to think up a main dish, and then once that's done I neglect to plan any sides to go with it, and so we usually don't even eat well rounded meals.
While surfing the Internet a couple of weeks ago, I stumbled upon something wonderful called Specialty Produce in San Diego. I was intrigued by the Farmet's Market Bag option. What you do is you place an order online by Midnight on Sunday for pickup the following Thursday or Friday. For $20, you get a bag full of fresh produce from different local farms You can also pay a little extra to add on items such as fresh fish, bread, cheese and more. The beautiful thing is that with the fish and produce you don't know in advance what you're getting, so it forces you to use your imagination and be creative in your cooking. Actually, the day before you pick it up you can go to their website and watch a youtube video of what's in the produce bag, so you do get a little preparation time.
Anyway - this past week was my first time ordering the bag. I added on the fish option for fun. Here's a list of what I got:
Bermuda Onions & Mixed Carrots – Weiser Farms
Lyon Artichoke – Life’s a Choke
Strawberries – Tutti Frutti Farms
Broccoli Spigarello & Deer’s Tongue Lettuce – Coleman Farms
Heirloom Tomatoes – Coastal Organics
Purslane – Rutiz Farms
Valencia Oranges – Garcia Organics
Kosui Asian Pears – Penryn Orchards
Not only did we eat amazingly this week, but this actually helped to make meal planning so much easier. I've decided it's much easier to start with the vegetable and then plan the main dish from there. I totally meant to take pictures of what we ate, but we were too busy wolfing the food down. Just to give you an idea though, we had a cheese tasting with some friends and I pulled out the strawberries which were seriously the one of the highlights of my life. The next day I made a delicious cucumber, purslane and tomato salad (I had never even heard of purslane before this), and paired with my fresh fish purchase, which was scallops. I prepared the artichoke to round out the meal and it was amazing. I cooked up some yummy enchiladas with the hatch chile peppers, and another day I made a side concoction of rice, tomato, onion and purslane to go along with some pork chops and broccoli spigarello. My three year old son actually cried when I ate the last slice of valencia orange. I think you get the idea. Specialty Produce is located at 1929 Hancock St., inside the warehouse loading dock. Order the Farmer's Market Bag here and check them out. You won't be sorry.