Local Overload

September 8, 2008 at 3:31 pm

Rob Gardner

This week found the local family facing too much local food at the farmer’s market, at the Caputo’s near them and in their weekly CSA box.  In fact Farmer Vicki warned us in her weekly e-mail to be careful from the weight of the box.  This week’s local required a Teamster.

You simply cannot eat all of the food on offer right now.  The Oak Park Farmer’s Market showed more than a few types of melons and a few types of grapes.  Maybe there was one color of nectarine, one of peach, but raspberries came in two shades, red and golden.  Then apples, I did not do an exact count, but a rough estimate would be about 15 varieties for sale.  I really did not pay attention to how many types of pears there were beyond the red bartletts I bought, but there would be several of those too.   Basically, I could not buy all of the kinds of fruit for sale this week.  I made choices, decisions.   I could not have it all.

My first response is to lay off the foods that I can eat later.  We will be eating apples for months ahead (step one in converting your family to a local family is to cultivate a taste for apples in your kids); therefore, I layed off most of the apples (most but not all, my wife had a taste for honeycrips).  Grapes too I decided to wait on because we know we can stretch grapes two ways, they last weeks in a fridge and they make an easy quasi-popsicle through freezing.   Eat the peaches and nectarines and plums that will be gone soon(er).  Your second response should be to think as ahead as we have.  Instead of trying to shove all the harvest in your stomachs now, think how you can put some aside through freezing, drying, canning and cold storage–keep your eyes on this site for more advice soon on these methods for preserving the harvest.

This week’s haul below (last week’s local input here).

Genesis Grower’s CSA

  • Watermelon
  • Cucumbers
  • Green bell peppers
  • Jalepeno peppers
  • Broccoli
  • Sweet corn
  • Eggplant
  • Heirloom tomatoes
  • Cherry tomatoes


  • Michigan pears
  • Michgain plums

Whole Foods

  • Michigan lettuce

Oak Park Farmer’s Market

  • Thyme, rosemary, tomatoes – Genesis Growers
  • Basil, more tomatoes, arugula, nasturtiums – Catalina Farm
  • Nectarines, honey crisp apples, peaches (1/2 bushel), pears – Hardin Farms
  • Raspberries – Skibbes
  • Prune plums – Wettstein’s