Allandale, Boston's last working farm is less than three miles from my home and work, is more or less on my way home, and until last Friday I had never set foot in it. What the Hell is wrong with me?
I cook all the time. I pay way too much buying organic produce at Harvest because I believe it's good for me. I have even fantasized about planting my own garden despite the fact that I can't even keep a potted plant alive, because I love the idea of shortening the distance between field and table. And yet, I never wandered into a farmer's market until a week ago. Why? I blame my obsessive compulsive order.
See, I don't browse. I don't walk into a place and say Those are the prettiest eggplants ever! I'll take 20. I like to cook and I know how to make things come out the way I like them, but more importantly, I like to have a plan, and with the exception of eggs, pasta sauce, popcorn and salad, I exclusively follow recipes. It soothes me.
Since I can't do what normal people do and just, y'know, follow my vegetable bliss, I did what crazy people do: 1) I mapped out all the farmer's markets in the area by day so I'm not planning my life around the closest one. 2) I found an awesome list of what's available at one of these markets and more importantly *when* so I can actually plan according to the seasons. 3) I made a big ol' list - one item a day that I'm planning on cooking with. Half these items come from my stuff-that's-available list, and half come from my foods-I-should-be-eating-more-of list, which I have adapted from my Healthy Food Directory, which is a book Susan gave me years ago that I really couldn't live without. 4) Every day a new recipe! And if I miss a day, I have to cook two things, or else all this lovely produce will go to waste.
The most important part of this plan is that I not go bankrupt, so for the first time ever, I am actually making a plan for every morsel of food that I bring into the house. The crabmeat and cheddar dip Rob's mom brought over has been cooked into my eggs every morning this week (yum!). Next to the eggs, a salad I make every day with whatever vegetable odds & ends I have lying around. For lunch today I had leftover bok choy & tofu stir fry, with a side of borsht. Tonight I'm making vegetable soup and some hot chocolate with almond oil.
So these are the things that make me feel like I'm acting my age: I'm cooking like a grown-up, my roommate got us a cat named Milo who follows me everywhere, and thanks to Rob I actually know where my iron is because he *uses* an iron. It's mind blowing, really. Luckily I am tempering this with karaoke - twice this week! - and my busy social calendar. And there are the things that make me feel responsible but young and vital at the same time; teaching dance and having my weekly supper club. Hooray for balance!