This fall, we were excited when Blue Apron invited us (and our city kids) to Alewife Farm, a couple hours north of New York City. There, we spent some time with a real live farmer, lots of ginger and a big red tractor. Here are some more photos, if you’d like to see…
The farmer, Tyler, 26, who was wearing dusty jeans and Red Wing boots, had a loping walk and laid-back demeanor. “I studied film at Cornell,” he told us. “But when I read The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan, I knew I had to go into farming.”
He moved to the Hudson Valley, which is a center for a growing young farming community. “All my friends are farmers,” he said.
First we stepped into a humid greenhouse to help harvest ginger. The boys were excited to pull it up from the ground.
“Fresh ginger is really juicy,” Tyler said, “I’ll chop it into anything, like soups or stir fry, and you can make really good tea.”
Next, we walked to the barn, and Anton was in HEAVEN on this big red tractor. “I listen to a lot of dorky Podcasts on the tractor,” Tyler told Alex and me. “Right now I’m really into one called Hardcore History.”
Meanwhile, Toby, of course, requested a peek into the pick-up truck.
We then walked through the fields, where gentle Anton seemed to find his calling…
He was even inspired to eat raw lettuce and kale straight out of the ground. (!!)
Tyler grows spinach, kale, carrots, radishes, beets, as well as unusual varieties of familiar things, like miniature butternut squash and espelette, a heirloom French pepper he sells to chefs. Blue Apron helps support his small farm by ordering directly from him and featuring his produce in their recipes.
In fact, Blue Apron has supported 56 farms so far this year. Farmers are able to grow certain crops for the first time because of Blue Apron, such as purple summer beans, raja eggplant, atlas carrots, lemon cucumbers, honeynut squash, baby fennel, cone cabbage and gypsy peppers.
The following week, back at home, we made the Blue Apron recipe with fresh ginger: Chicken Pad Kee Mao.
Blue Apron, the meal subscription service, delivers a box of fresh ingredients with recipes for two, three or four meals a week. You can skip or cancel at any time. Here are this week’s recipes — we’ve found all their past meals delicious and especially love the family plan (great for leftovers!).
Bonus for first-time customers: Sign up for Blue Apron and get your first two meals free.
Thank you so much, Blue Apron and Tyler!
(Farm photos by Nicki Sebastian for Cup of Jo. Meal photos by Yossy Arefi for Cup of Jo. This post is sponsored by Blue Apron, one of our beloved longtime sponsors. Thank you for supporting the brands that help keep Cup of Jo running.)