Saturday, October 22, 2016

Farm fresh!

A lot of folks like to live close to the big city, where restaurants, shopping, and night life are plentiful.  Bill and I are big fans of country living.  We like wide open spaces, peace and quiet, and beautiful views.  Another benefit to living outside of the city is the availability of excellent local produce.  We have the good fortune of living near several farms, many of which sell fresh milk, eggs, and vegetables.  Today, we decided to stop by a couple of farms to see how self serve shopping at farms works.


I almost wish I liked carving jack o' lanterns.

If you've spent any time in Germany, you have no doubt seen the self service fields where you can cut your own flowers or buy a pumpkin.  The self serve farms are no different.  Our first stop was at a farm where eggs, onions, and potatoes are consistently offered.  Right now, they're also selling lots of pumpkins and other gourds!


Pumpkins!


I couldn't resist taking a photo of the pretty landscape.  Our house is within walking distance, though we brought the car.

I was surprised by how many people pulled up while we were checking out the goods.  This particular farm just had a little room with stuff on the shelves.  You're on your honor to pay the self serve cash box (Kasse).


We bought eggs, an onion, and a big bag of potatoes.  The eggs, by the way, have not been subjected to the egg wash that American eggs get.  Therefore, there is no need to refrigerate them as we would in the USA.  They are shelf stable until mid November.


Grand total-- five euros and forty cents.


Potatoes!  We'll be set for awhile.


They always have eggs, potatoes, and onions, as well as other items when they are in season.  I noticed they had carrots, garlic, and a big leek on offer today. 


It helps to bring your own bag.



This farm also has a flower field where you can score sunflowers or other flowers. 

Next, we went to another farm where one can purchase fresh, ice cold, raw milk 24/7.  We had a glass bottle from another trip to the machine in town (where the milk is pasteurized).  Bill ran our bottle through the dishwasher so it would be nice and sterile.


Truth in advertising.  No need to ever go without milk because you can get it 24/7 here.  


But if we had needed to, we could have purchased a bottle at the farm.  A liter of raw milk costs a euro.  We will boil it before we drink it.


Bill buys raw milk and lentils from vending machines.  Edited to add: a German friend says we should take care to make sure the lentils are free of stones before we eat them.


This farm was also selling lots of pumpkins and squash. 

We decided to go into town to see what was being sold at the vending machine on the main drag.  This machine sells pasteurized milk, noodles, lentils, apple juice, and potatoes.  


We decided to get some lentils.  On the way home, I spotted another vending machine that Bill had never noticed.  We didn't check it out,because it looked like it might be low on products.


Our haul today.  We spent 11,40 euros.

I will admit that we don't do farm shopping nearly as often as we should.  I think now that we've done it today, we will do it a lot more often.  I feel good about supporting the local economy and I know we're getting excellent products.  Better yet, now I know vending machines aren't just for candy and soda anymore.  

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