Sunday, October 26, 2008

Farm-to-Congregation Project: our CSA

Tonight we celebrated the end of the growing season at a Harvest Potluck with other people who participated in this same project. Grady and I have been enjoying fruits and vegetables through our CSA (Community supported agriculture) since early June. Inferfaith Food & Farms Partnership is an effort of Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon. Their goal is to "empower faith communities, farmers and neighborhoods to build rural-rban alliances and create innovative partnerships for just and sustainable food systems."

In the Farm-to-Congregation project, some congregations have a farmer who brings produce to sell at the church on Sundays. In others, the partnership is a CSA. My faith community, St. Andrew's Catholic church partnered with a Lutheran church in the same neighborhood and Heather Burns. Heather leased space on Sauvie Island and established Little Frog Farm. Each week, she brought the harvest of that week to a location in northeast Portland and we picked up our share.

It has been a wonderful introduction to being part of a CSA for us. Heather has been very welcoming and great to talk with each week. In addition, I usually ran into other people I knew from St. Andrew's when I went to pick up the share. I even had a chance to chat with a woman from the Lutheran church who had been a reading tutor at my school when I was principal at Vernon. I've had mixed feelings about being a part of this particular farm share since the pick up is not close to our house. But, the connections with other people I know has offset that concern somewhat.

So, for the potluck, I made a vegetarian lasagne. For the sauce, I used tomatoes, garlic and onions from Heather and also some out of our garden, plus basil from our plant. Then I put in swiss chard that came from our garden. The rest was pretty much standard issue lasagne items. We came home with an empty pan even though there was a lot of good food at the potluck.

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