Sweet Surprises

The kitchen was a disaster, unusable. Fortunately, we had a friend who let us house-sit while she was out of town for the weekend, and we had a CSA box to feed us while we got the disaster under control.

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When my husband and I returned home from a week-long road trip we discovered a kitchen disaster. He quickly cleaned up the worst of it, but it would be days before cooking could get back to normal. A friend invited us to housesit for her over the weekend, letting me use her kitchen as well as sleep someplace far from the smells of cleaners, but that first day was still a bit shaky. Not having access to my own food stash is disheartening to say the least.

Fortunately it was Friday so the next morning we picked up our CSA box, full of familiar, wonderfully wholesome food. A survey of the contents made the lunch menu clear: BLTs. Even away from the comfort and familiarity of my kitchen, the box provided everything we needed.

Sourdough bread, fresh lettuce, and tomato were all in this week's box, and although bacon is currently sold out at Morning Harvest farm, it was included in the share earlier this year.

Slicing the tomato brought a smile to my face when I saw the hearts formed by one of the inner cavities. Sweet surprises like this are a regular occurrence when it comes to my CSA share, whether it's opening my box to find a fragrant melon or learning to use a particular cut of meat. And then there's the simple pleasure of knowing that I don't have to make a shopping list — I simply have to visit a single stall at the farmer's market to pick up my box of groceries.

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It might be easy to worry that without control of the shopping list, I would end up with food I didn't want. While it's true that often enough there are things in the box that I wouldn't have purchased otherwise, more often than not that ends up being a positive thing. It might mean I get to learn something new or try a recipe outside of my comfort zone. Or it might mean getting to eat something I love but wouldn't have thought of otherwise — like a BLT.

Tell us about a happy food-related surprise you've experienced, especially if it's something you've received in your CSA share!

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