"Hey Stace! It's Nic. I just got my produce bag from Tiny's Organic and am loving all the good stuff. I want to cook this chard, but it's connected to the beets. I'm a little confused over here, so will you give me a call so I can run some ideas by you? Thanks!"
I left this message for my gardening guru friend after picking up my first 12 pound bag of local, organic produce from Tiny's Organic. Chard connected to the beets? Why don't they just call it "beet greens?" These questions run through my head as I scan the amazing recipes and information on the Tiny's newletter. The fresh chard tastes even better once I've learned that it contains phytonutrients that have disease prevention properties. Chard leaves are also an excellent source of antioxidants and vitamin C, which helps maintain normal connective tissue, prevent iron deficiency and also helps the body develop resistant to infectious agents by boosting immunity. It ALSO contains vitamin K which has an important role in strengthening bone health and formation. Regular inclusion of chard in the diet is found to prevent osteoporosis and anemia and is believed to help protect the body from cardiovascular diseases and colon and prostate cancers. Forget vitamin supplements. Hit me with the chard, beets and leeks.
I combined the Tiny's chard recipe with some advice from Stacy. I wanted to eat the stems because their bursting red color signaled my vitamin radar. It would be a waste to toss those nutrient-rich stems in the compost. So I first sauteed the stems with chopped onion in olive oil to soften them up first. After about 3 minutes I added the chard leaves and 2 cloves of chopped garlic. I sauteed for about 4 more minutes. The result was a quick, delicious and healthy dish.
The health benefits of eating local and organic food can not be ignored. Food that is fresh and recently picked contains more nutrients and enzymes that have been proven to prevent disease. Many Americans, myself included, have never lived on a farm or grown their own food. Supermarkets allow us to enjoy all food at all times of the year, so many of us are disconnected from the natural harvesting seasons. Ordering a local, organic produce bag educates you on what actually grows in your area and when. Summer in Seattle is bursting with Farmers Markets and friendly ways to incorporate all this yumminess into your diet. Tiny's Organic also now offers a mini-sized bag, delivery and weekly payment options. So get out there, keep it fresh, keep it organic and enjoy the summer abundance!