Before I started dating Adam, I had never met a farmer..have you ever met a real-life farmer? Now I not only know, but I am related to some of the best farmers around (around Auburn that is, but they are so good that I think we could say they're the best "around" no matter where we happen to be!)
Growing up in West Jefferson, some of the neighbors had small garden plots with the normal variety of tomatoes, okra, and cucumbers, rarely, however, did we find ourselves privy to their harvest. We bought our fruit and veggies at the grocery store and were blind to the goodness of farm-fresh produce. If all you ever have is grocery-store veggies, then you may think, as I once did, that the phrase "Buy Fresh, Buy Local" is simply a marketing campaign.
However, it is TRUE! If you want the freshest, most flavorful bounty that the earth can offer, you must go to the source!
On Monday, that is exactly what we did!
After a wonderful weekend getaway in Auburn we stopped by Randle Farms to select some goodies that we don't have growing in our small plot. For the first part of the morning, we picked blueberries and one or two or three or more of them may not have made it from my hand to the bucket :-) Sidenote: We had a blind taste test to compare Randle Farms blueberries with "organic" blueberries from the store...no comparison.
After 6 gallons of blueberries were collected, we were offered the chance to explore another portion of the farm which contains veggies galore. There we selected yellow tomatoes (yes, yellow...I had never heard of such before either). Today I canned them and they look simply lovely (Waters--2, Tomatoes--0)
A special thanks to Zach who collected this garbage bag full of peppers for us! Most of them were chopped and placed in the freezer while some grace our table as a lovely, colorful centerpiece and others have already found their way to the tummy.
Other bounty from the farm included melons of all shapes and sizes and lovely flowers. I am so grateful not only for a husband who is a gardening master, but also for his family, their farming skills, and their willingness to share "the gifts from the goodland."