Fruit Bliss Dried Figs
I was recently sent a bag of Fruit Bliss dried fruits to review by Onegreenplanet.org. I chose to receive dried figs. I got them today and tried them, and am now happily snacking away. The dried figs are very moist and tasty, and the seeds (which completely make the fig texture!) are all there and crunchy, yum! The only concern I have is that the bag is a bit small. I don’t actually know how much these cost, but it seems like the bag could contain a bit more fruit, if not just in the name of being more eco-friendly (bulk = less packaging). Other than that, though, I like them a lot - especially that they have only two ingredients: figs and water. Plus, they’re easy to store - I live in a dorm, and keeping fresh fruits attracts flies, so having dried fruit with a resealable bag is perfect.
My Local Eating Guide
During the summer, I like to buy from farm stands and farmer’s markets to eat fresh and local. This summer I’m living at school so I mostly eat in the dining hall, but on weekends I feed myself. I like to buy from the farmer’s market as much as I can, and it’s pretty easy because my school is in a traditionally agricultural region.
Shopping at the farmer’s market can be difficult if you don’t live in an area that promotes agriculture or in a big city, though. Usually very rural regions, like where I live, or densely populated cities like Boston, because farmers will transport their produce there for the sales available.
Farmer’s markets are different from grocery store produce sections in that they do not have all the types of vegetables all the time. I find that a chart of what is in-season makes it easier to plan. Usually this can be searched on Google - “What’s in season in (state)”. I have my state’s chart as my desktop background, so I can easily check what’s in season and plan my meals around it. This month, spinach and other greens are in season, so this weekend I am making a delicious spinach-lentil dish, for example.
It’s easier to avoid waste shopping at a farmer’s market or farm stand, which is great. Generally they provide plastic bags, but they are often more accepting of reusable bags than grocery stores. I usually bring some large reusable grocery bags as well as some reusable produce bags made of lightweight cloth. They’re pretty easy to make (click for a tutorial), and they are much less wasteful (and way cuter) than plastic. For berries and small fruits, it’s pretty easy to reuse the plastic or cardboard baskets that they come in, at least a few times; or you can dump them into your own reusable basket and give the provided basket back to the farmer for reuse. For eggs, some farmers will put them into reusable egg cartons (click here) if you bring them; meats can be placed in any kind of sealable, reusable container, such as a large tupperware (or you can opt to go meat-free!).
When you get home, you need to store your produce properly. The Berkeley Farmer’s Market has a comprehensive list about produce storage - click here.
It’s pretty easy to eat local during the summer, in many places. Unfortunately I still have not discovered the secret to local winter eating - besides canning, but I don’t have the equipment to do that. Not to mention I have a full college dining plan during the fall, winter, and early spring, so I have no need. However, I will be frequenting the farmer’s market all summer long, as I encourage you to do! Happy farm-fresh shopping!