Sunday, October 11, 2009
I'm pretty happy with my weekly Sunday Farmer's Market ritual for fresh fruit and veggies but when I came across the Farm Fresh To You booth at the Abbot Kinney Street Festival, I decided to give their delivery service a test run for fun. Working with a range of 6000 local family farmers growing organic fare, Farm Fresh To You is a mail-order service delivering an assortment of fruit and vegetables most in season to your doorstep on a weekly bi-weekly or monthly schedule.
The service is super easy to sign up for, and during the registration process, customers can nix any fruits or veggies they don't want to receive so although each package remains a surprise, which meant I could check off kiwifruit (which I ironically have an aversion to) so I know they'll never be included in my delivery. The multitude of package options also cover different sizes ideal from single folk or couples (Small Mix of about 8 different produce items, $23) to larger families (Monster Mix with 23 various items, $55) as well as fruit only, vegetables only and no-cooking required options. I opted for the Small Mix for my first delivery.
Several days after signing up, I came home to find my box-of-fruit'n'veggies by my door. Inside was a colorful mix of fall produce; half a dozen apples, zucchini, orange bell peppers, onions, Yukon potatoes, a couple garlic cloves, several heirloom tomatoes, button mushrooms and a punnet of strawberries, also enclosed was a sheet of paper with several recipe suggestions which complemented the items in the box (recipes also online).
Based on my package of produce, I bit into one of my crunchy Ambrosia apples while deciding to make Basque Chicken for dinner, which called for the onions, garlic, bell peppers and tomatoes I just received. I saved the potatoes and mushrooms for the 'pancetta-wrapped mushrooms' and 'mashed potatoes with cream cheese' recipes which came along with my order for another night.
The produce list varies with each delivery depending on what's freshest for the given week. Although those who like to plan can log online a couple days ahead to see what will be arriving, I thought it was fun receiving a package of surprise produce. Planning meals around the handpicked assortment of fruit and vegetables also took me out of my regular rotating roster of go-to dishes I usually cook which also made it more fun in the kitchen.
I eat out too much to sign up for the service on a weekly basis so opted for the deliveries to come every month. At $23 for the small box, you'd probably do better shopping on your own at the farmer's market, but it's not over-the-top pricey either to support and indulge in fresh organic groceries.
I received a $10 discount off my first order for signing up at the Abbot Kinney booth and have a $5 off refer-a-friend coupon so if anyone's interested in trying out a delivery for $18 (there is no commitment and you can cancel at any time,) let me know in the comments box and I'll send the discount your way!
Farm Fresh To You