One of my increasing themes here is living more simply, which involves eating more simply and appreciating nature more.
I’ve cooked since childhood, when my siblings and I were responsible for cooking dinners regularly. Only since last year have I started cooking from fresh, raw fruits and vegetables, especially since joining the farm share and the experiment not buying food with packaging that I’d have to throw away. I still take four months or so to fill a canvas tote bag with all my trash, to give you an idea of how little packaging I’m using. What was I doing all that time?
Now the joys of springtime are greater than ever. Warm weather is nice, but I can’t believe how much more I love fresh fruits and vegetables than I did before. I’ve always loved cherries, strawberries, and peaches, but didn’t know to love collard greens, spinach, rhubarb, the various lettuces I’m getting now, and so on. Not that I didn’t love the beets, turnips, radishes, and other root vegetables I got during the winter, but these spring plants… I can’t put into words how delicious they are and how good eating them makes me feel. I’m learning more about food all the time, including how much I didn’t know before.
My building, in the heart of New York City, has berry trees in front of it and I’m getting fresh, sweet, juicy berries right off the tree. Besides the farm share, I get plants from the farmer’s markets once or twice a week. As best I can tell, they sell stuff picked the day before from nearby farms.
Packaged and prepared food can’t match fresh from the ground or tree, at least not for me. I can’t say I regret the packaged food I’ve prepared—the pasta and sauce from jars, canned soups, and so on—or all the restaurants I’ve eaten at, but I wish I’d started with freshly picked food from nearby earlier.
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