Grocery List

I don't spend much time in grocery stores lately but there continue to be items we can't live without, lest we perish. Which has me inspired to start an ongoing grocery list of foods produced as close as possible, ideally organic and at minimum friendly that I feel comfortable buying off the shelf. The list is partly to share and partly to remind myself. I'm repeatedly standing in the same aisle, late for something, in someones way, glasses perched precariously on my nose comparing tiny print labels. I long for the day when a pretty package was the only basis for a decision.

The first item on the grocery list is rice.

For years the cute guy and I have been buying Lundberg long grain brown rice. The smell of a pot of rice simmering on the stove will generally smooth any rough edges we've carried home. Lundberg rice is, per their packaging, manufactured in Richvale, California, south of Chico. "What's to manufacture?", I say out loud. The cute guy puts down his book, (for the thirty eighth time) and explains they mean cutting and hulling, cleaning and the packaging and since he knows just about everything I believe him and he goes back to reading. In any event, it's certified California organic and they don't use genetically modified rice varieties. They make rice milk and rice cakes too, which we like a lot. We'll keep buying Lundberg but we've got a farmers' market alternative in the house now too.

Our farmer at Canvas Ranch, Deborah, offered us, her farm subscribers, bags of brown rice from a grower in Princeton, Massa Organics, near the Lundberg's in Richvale. I was all for it, something new, stock up for the winter. Give me three bags, I replied. And now we like it. I feel like we are cheating on an old friend.

A few days later I saw Massa Organics at the Sunday morning farmer's market. They were there for the first time. I introduced myself as if the young man should know me. He smiled, shook my hand, told me his name. He was selling big sacks of rice too, 20 lbs., that I entertained but calmly talked myself down from.

One of the things I like about Massa Organics is that it does have a pretty package in a homey kind of a way. A two story almost Napa looking house with an oak tree in the front yard. A trellis and a pond. There's a cloud in the sky and without my glasses it looks like three helicopters overhead. That threw me. They're ducks though. The bag of rice also makes a great hostess gift that doesn't require any wrapping. Just make sure your hostess has her glasses on.

No comments: