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You hit the nail on the head - you're lucky to live in CA. I currently live in Israel and don't read (or speak) Hebrew, so grocery shopping is a challenge. 2 1/2 years ago we moved from Santa Barbara - local wines! local cheese! local olive oil! local fresh caught seafood! EXCELLENT year-round farmer's markets! fresh, local strawberries available all year around except two weeks in January - to Louisville where the farmer's market only ran Apr-Sept, and let me tell you, April through late June was pretty bleak. (We could buy flowers and herbs). We did get to know our local farmers, though, and bought beef and pork to store in the extra freezer thru the winter. And Whole Foods - literally the only option other than Kroger - did sell local eggs and cheese. But it was rough.

So this is my long winded way of saying I currently can't join you, but I definitely envy you!


I try, but this time of year in NY it's hard to find much local produce beyond apples, potatoes and greens. But I've joined a CSA for the summer, and we just bought a whole pig - raised about 100 miles from home! I too envy your California resources. Good luck next week!

Abi Jones

You're lucky with the wine area. Here in DC we're within 100 miles of a bunch of horrible, horribles wines. Yick.


i have been thinking about this a lot lately too. it seems where you are as well as where i am it is so easy to find delicious local organic produce.we do the farmers markets every sunday but we go thru such an enormous amount of produce from each meal, to juicing, etc. that its so hard to keep my fridge full. we are joining a co-op so there's a start for me. have fun with it!


We are lucky to live here- easy to buy local. I hope to see you at the farmers market.

On another note, do you have any chicken ideas. My kids are tired of all of our meals.


We like to do an Eat Local week in August. It's a fun challenge. There isn't much local here yet though...we're in NH. Can't wait for the Farmer's Markets to start in May and our CSA to start in June.


HM, can I do it? I can try! We will have to have another playdate so you can teach me more fun things to cook.


I live in central NC and my BF and I aspire to eat locally as much as possible. We have a CSA, and supplement from the farmer's market down the block and from the local Co-Op. Flour, sugar, salt & the occasional soy product are our exceptions, though we use locally baked breads when we don't bake our own, and drink wine & beer from the area. Hard? Occasionally. But it's generally delicious, makes us eat a larger variety of foods than we thought, and it's actually cheaper, as we've learned to dry our own herbs, and to can excess produce. This weekend we're making strawberry jam.

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Cooking Gear To Spice Things Up

  • All-Clad cookware
    I use the stainless line. I love it because you can put it in the dishwasher. If you like to cook it is sooo worth it to have quality pots and pans. I recommend buying a set on sale and then filling in extras as you need them. (Watch for sales and specials.)
  • Cast Iron Skillet
    Please get rid of all your teflon-coated non-stick plans and get a cast iron skillet. I use mine for searing meat, poultry, and fish and then finishing off in the oven. In fact, get two cast iron skillets—one large enough to hold two ribeyes and a smaller, fried-egg-sized one for making...well...eggs.
  • Food Processor
    Quickly slice/shred veggies and cheese, make hummus or other spreads in a snap, and make pie crust without making a mess.
  • Global Knives
    I am partial to the 18 incher. Yep, I like big knives and I cannot lie. If you like to cook (or even if you don't) you deserve to have good knives. At least one.
  • Instant Hot Water Dispenser
    If you can't afford to have one built-in, this is a great alternative. It's nice to have boiling water at the push of a button to make tea, instant miso soup, or morning oatmeal for the kidlets.
  • Microplane Grater/Zester
    Use this to grate citrus zest, nutmeg, and cheese. You could get a coarser one, but you don't need to. I have one and I use it for everything.
  • Penzey's Spices
    A great resource for all your herb and spice needs.
  • Rice Cooker
    Every family should have one.
  • Silpat
    Silpat is a silicone mat used for baking. They come in various sizes. Items will not stick to it. It is a must for any home baker.
  • Stick or Immersion Blender
    It doesn't have to be fancy, but try and get the highest HP you can afford. I use my stick blender (+ attachments) for making salad dressing (weekly), pureeing soups, making babyfood, and whipping cream.


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