As many of you might be doing the same right now, I’m trying to go to the food store as little as possible. When I do have to go, I stock up on as many non perishable goods that will stretch a meal a lot longer. This can be a creative challenge when you have a family of six and if your husband and son are always ravenous! Some things I’ve found very helpful during this time are getting in touch with our community Co-ops and CSAs to see what is available in bulk.
My neighbor recommended a fantastic local co-op where I could get bulk grains, dried beans, coffee, dairy products, nuts and honey for wholesale prices. I put in an order that should be ready this coming week and can’t wait for my 50lb bag of All Purpose Flour! As I posted before, we have become a bit of a bakery around here! Fresh bread is in the oven every other night.
Another idea for those who haven’t checked it out are CSA’s (Community Sustained Agriculture) – local farms in which you can join for a fee and receive weekly shares of fresh vegetables, fruits, meats, dairy products, etc. If you haven’t checked them out, they are a great way to support local farmers in your area, know where your food is coming from, and avoid shopping at the supermarkets. The wait in our area to have a delivery by one of the large box stores is about a month! Since I wanted to get a few other things that weren’t available through the co-op, I contacted our local mom and pop market in town to see if they might deliver and they are doing just that! It wasn’t something I thought about before, but am now able to purchase some staple items, some from local companies and have it delivered to our doorstep with a 5 day wait time and $10 charge for delivery. Not bad. We set up a bin outside our mudroom door with a sign letting the delivery person know to leave all deliveries there for us. This allows us to weed through what can sit out (non perishable) and wash and/or disinfect the other items that need to be refrigerated. Just one more thing to do to help keep our family safe (it might be an extra step not totally necessary), but for me right now, nothing seems like too much to keep our family and community safe.
Here’s a great link to help you find CSA’s and Co-op’s in the United States
If you need a little more inspiration about getting back to basics, check out the YouTube series: Great Depression Cooking with Clara, a 98 year old cook whose grandson Christopher Cannucciari began filming in 2007 preparing her mother’s Depression meals.
It is a lovely reminder of how our families lived during WWI and II and during the great depression. They knew what if meant to be resilient, to go without, to stretch a meal and to live a little simpler during higher times of stress and uncertainty.