Early Apricots

There were apricots at the farmers' market today. From the central valley.

"They're early? Right?"

"Right on time," the farm man said. I'd never seen him before. I bought two. I didn't plan on liking them.

"They're expensive," a co-worker said as I handed her one.

"You pay three times more for a latte." She was unconvinced. I tried again. "You pay twice as much for a cookie."

"It's a piece of fruit," she said. "It's expensive." And then she took a bite. And two more without saying anything. "That was good." She held the pit out for emphasis.

I shook my head in agreement and she added, "I guess it was worth it."

I agreed for the second time. It will be a week before I can get them again though.


Anonymous said...

It's seems we're so locked into the idea of expensive / cheap when it comes to healthy stuff. While we'll pay extra for treat foods - a piece of fruit above the normal cost is "expensive". No regard to season. Which means most people won't buy it.

But after a winter, that first taste of stone fruit is a thing of wonder. I would have bought the apricots too. Only difference is, I wouldn't have shared them!

Lucy said...

Fruit, perfect and succulent, must surely be the very best kind of treat.

I tasted real, old heirloom apricots for the first time, at the right time, this year. Nearly took my breath away.


Green Bean said...

Why, oh why, do people bemoan the price of high quality, local, organic fruits and vegetables but shell out money on all kinds of processed, unhealthy "foods?"

Even though we've talked before how sometimes the first fruits of the season are less flavorful, there is nothing like biting into a cherry after 11 months without.

Back to the initial point, I used to have very high cholesterol in college (the last time it was tested). I had a doctor's appointment yesterday and she pronounced me in wonderful health, raving about my cholesterol levels (good and bad) and attributing it to our healthy diet. As Michael Pollan wrote in In Defense of Food, “Yes, shopping this way takes more money and effort, but as soon [as] you begin to treat that expenditure not just as shopping but also as a kind of vote – a vote for health in the largest sense – food no longer seems like the smartest place to economize.”

Donna said...

Looks like I'm going to be buying CA apricots soon instead of waiting for Oregon's like I'd planned (doctor's orders for my son). Thanks for the preview - now I'm looking forward to them!

Kale for Sale said...

kathryn - Well put - the apricot was a thing of wonder. I literally stopped in my tracks. Thanks for sharing the laugh.

lucy - I think there's a haiku in there.

green bean - It's weird but I think I actually spend less on food totally from the farmer's market than I used to spend at the groccery store. Although comparing item to item the farmers' market is more money. The differnce is likely the lack of impulse buys and processed foods. I wouldn't have believed it initially though. Congrats on the great check up!

Kale for Sale said...

Donna - I'm looking forward to them too. One was such a tease.

Green Bean said...

Yes, people so often complain about the price at farmers' markets and, item for item, it is often more (except perhaps when things are at the height of the season and the farmers are experiencing a glut). However, I, like you, spend less overall. I'm not buying that random mix of risotto that will sit at the back of my pantry forever. I'm passing on the canned fruit and eating fresh. I'm not tempted by a prepared meal of Indian food or a frozen pizza or the giant slabs of chocolate by the cashiers stand.

Then, of course, that leads to a reduction in garbage. I'm saving $156 a year by getting my garbage down to one can a week. Actually, we could probably do one can a month but they won't reduce it any further.

As I said with the doctor's visit, I'm also likely saving money (I hope, knock on wood) for future medical visits, RXs and expensive supplements. All in all, shopping almost exclusively at the farmers market WILL save you money. Just don't get hung up on the price of an individual fruit or vegetable.

Kale for Sale said...

green bean - I'm going to have to talk to Lance, our garbage guy, to see if we can cut back on our garbage pick ups. Good idea.

And I have to remember that for some folks the farmers market is a stretch and I so wish that were different. Because it works for me and I believe in it so strongly I want it to work for everyone. But therein lies probably the biggest challenge of all - how to feed every person on the planet sustainably in every way. However that can be done. Makes my silly apricot hardly worth mentioning.