Insert punchlines as you see fit, but my recent foodie field trip to a local organic farm with fellow blogger and SweatPink Ambassador Tammy Means (GingerMantra founder) was no joke!
Unbeknownst to us until our visit, this 10-acre gem of a place called Orchard Pond Organics sits just a short drive from where we eat, live, work, and workout daily. They raise grass-fed beef that is supplied to several local restaurants regularly.
They grow an amazing variety of organic vegetables, from red okra to lime basil and spinach. They produce honey.
Who knew?! Until recently, we didn't!
Finally, this past weekend, Tammy and I discovered Orchard Pond - and explored. (Read her post here.)
I bought their organic honey. I cradled their massive sweet potatoes like a newborn baby. We walked the rows of crops, enjoying the pungent smell of lime basil and marveling at bright purple eggplants and red okra. We ate jambalaya cooked over an open fire in a big cauldron, like they used to way back when. We even picked okra -- which I promptly took home and stir-fried in coconut oil, pepper and sea salt for a dinner companion to my leftover Paleo chicken "fried rice." (recipe coming next week!)
And we walked away with information about joining the veggie co-op, where -- for starting at just $25 a week -- we can get all of these organic, locally grown veggies (and fruits and organic locally roasted coffee if we choose) for daily cooking and eating.
I share this because whether you are here in sunny Florida or thousands of miles from here, odds are you can find a similar organic or locally made offering in your community. I love Whole Foods and Trader Joe's and Earth Fare just as much as the next foodie. But I also loved eating that okra and knowing exactly where it grew, how it itched my fingers when I picked it, and how the soil felt under my shoes as I picked it.
I think it is important to get away from our busy rush-rush-rush lives once in awhile to remember - and discover - where our food comes from. I think we need to be more educated about how our food is grown, who grows it, and what they put on it. When one of the farm tour participants asked an Orchard Pond farmer what she does about pesky bugs on leafy greens, she replied, "We get in there and look for them and crush them with our fingers. And dish soap works, too." That's it. No pesticides. No Franken-sprays.
So here's my challenge to you: find something locally grown and raised where you live. Visit. Taste. Shop. Whole Foods and the like aren't going anywhere, which is a good thing! But it's also a good thing to visit the kind of farms that supply Whole Foods and other such stores.
Friday TREAT alert: I am happy to be a #PoweredbyBits Energy Bits Ambassador, starting this week! For you all, it means you can enter "badassfit" when you buy any bag of algae power "bits" and get 15% off. (Read about them here.) Enjoy!!!
Coming up: Chicken Fried "Rice," and Yoga Stretches to keep you sane, and limber, on those upcoming Holiday road trips!