today was my first experience with bountiful baskets. karrie told me about it a few months ago, and i finally signed up for pick up this week. here's a nutshell version--they're a co-op who bargains with the suppliers for grocery stores and restaurants. they buy produce in bulk, and then distribute it to various locations in arizona (hello BECKY!), utah, idaho, and washington biweekly. because they can barter lower prices, they give you large amounts of fresh produce for extremely low prices. it's a volunteer organization, so if you sign up you are expected at some point to go do your time. i plan on it.
they acquire produce "locally" meaning arizona, texas, california, and northern mexico. hey, that's better than chile, right? the food is therefore seasonal, which is a wonder to me because california seems to be able to grow anything all year long. i'm grateful for this aspect of the co-op, because one of my goals this year is to cook food in it's season.
here's the catch--you don't get to choose exactly what you get. you show up and there is a basket full of fruit and a basket full of vegetables (everyone's the same). here's my basket this week:
1 large head romaine lettuce
1 bunch broccoli
10 roma tomatoes
7 red peppers
1 package strawberries
7 braeburn apples
11 bosc pears
they also offer fresh bread, granola, and often ethnic baskets. this week they offered a mexican basket. it had:
1 bunch green onions
1 bunch cilantro
1 head garlic
1 package homemade flour tortillas (oh.my.gosh. so good.)
2 yellow onions
6 green chile peppers
4 jalapeno pepper
i haven't tasted everything in the basket yet, obviously. i made some salsa verde today and mae ate half the box of strawberries. i also tried some tangerine and grapefruit. i will say this. the produce is extremely fresh and very tasty...sooooooooooo much better than the produce i've found in springville.
if you're interested, go to bountifulbaskets.org and sign up on their mailing list. you'll get an email next tuesday or wednesday saying the co-op is open. sign up for a basket (you only have until thursday, i think). they go saturday morning to reagan academy and pick up your booty.
then come home and stare at it in amazement and wonder what the heck you're going to cook with all this delicious looking food.
but don't forget a basket. then you'll look silly like i did.