Farm Fresh

In a world where claims like “fresh”, “healthy” and “all natural” are tossed around like pasta primavera, how does one truly define what these words mean?  I recently pondered the meaning of the word “fresh” and a lot of contradicting thoughts began to ping-pong in my head.  If I baked it in the oven, can I say it was fresh even if it was a frozen pizza? Is restaurant food considered fresh because it was just cooked and served, even though it was in a frozen state before?  If I grill it can I still call it fresh?  As my thoughts swirled around and around I kept coming back to one unequivocal meaning of fresh from my childhood. Farm fresh.

Every summer I used to visit my grandparents farm in Iowa.  It was there that I learned the meaning of farm fresh. Picking and eating fresh beans, corn on the cob and strawberries galore. Feasting on fresh farm eggs for breakfast. Having chicken for dinner that we had just feathered that day in the backyard!

My parents didn’t own a farm but my mom carried on her own tradition of farm fresh. She had farm eggs and milk delivered twice a week to our doorstep from someone we referred to as “The Egg Lady.”  My mom planted a wonderful garden and she was an amazing cook. Every summer she made strawberry rhubarb pie from fruit grown in our backyard, and to this day it’s one of my favorite desserts.

So how do I carry down a tradition of farm fresh?  I love taking my kids out to farms to pick fruit right off the tree.  We are so fortunate to live in such an amazing agricultural state, with an abundance of fruits and vegetables that come into harvest this time of year.  Cherries are one of the first fruits available in Idaho.  Williamson Orchards & Vineyards in Caldwell offers u-pick cherries this time of year. There’s nothing like picking farm fresh cherries, then heading home to make a dessert like chocolate cherry pie.

Why are locally grown cherries better?  Here are the top five reasons to choose Idaho grown cherries. There are many summer fruits that will soon be in season here.  This helpful calendar showcases all Idaho grown products, when they are available and more information on where they are grown.

So that’s my unequivocal definition of fresh. Farm fresh. I might not own a farm but I love getting out to visit one!

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