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Friday, July 20, 2012

Farm Fresh to You

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We have just a couple of days left in California before we return to France. When we first arrived, with four weeks stretching ahead of us it seemed like we had so much time and I expected we would fill much of it doing some of the touristy things we never got around to whilst living here, like visiting Alcatraz or walking across the Golden Gate Bridge in its 75th anniversary year. The four weeks have flown by though and those activities will have to stay on our bucket list as we chose to spend our time staying local, near friends and our favourite swimming pool, a ballet camp for India and a quilting camp for Georgia and more sleepovers for the big girls than we can count!

Last weekend though, we did fulfill a long held desire to attend the Capay Tomato Festival, hosted by the farm, Capay Organic, that used to deliver us our weekly box of organic vegetables. We started getting the box about four years ago and it completely changed the way we ate. I already loved cooking at home, but starting our menu planning with the vegetables we had available rather than the meat seemed to be a much healthier approach and never quite knowing which seasonal vegetables were going to turn up in our box really got the whole family trying new foods on a weekly basis.

We had attended lots of open days at the farm in every season whilst we lived here, but the heirloom tomato festival in the summer never seemed to fall at a good time for us. This year though we finally made it with our good friends who share our love for the contents of those boxes.

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The farm is about an hour and a half's drive north of San Francisco and in such a pretty location. Tractor rides took visitors around the fields, filled at this time of year with summer squash and asparagus.

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There were plenty of activities for the little ones. Arts and crafts, hula hoops, herb salt making and Florence's favourite...

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...bubbles!

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The main event though was the Heirloom Tomato Tasting.

Not only did the family who run Capay Organic pioneer organic farming in the region, farmer's markets and fresh produce delivery, they also reintroduced heirloom tomatoes to the market. Here's how...

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What a great story!

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Now, although those organic boxes have got my kids eating carrots, pistachios, spinach and even kale, India, Georgia and Savannah still maintain that they hate tomatoes and cannot usually be persuaded to eat them. I think they may have been converted though after this weekend. All three girls tried and liked the huge variety of tomatoes on offer.

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Georgia sporting some Bastille Day fireworks!

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Someone who doesn't need any persuading to eat a tomato though is Florence. She adores them and she was in tomato tasting heaven here.

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The party continued with live music.

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Just a few more tomatoes.

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And dancing.

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A wonderful day out in the fresh air with good food, great company and more tomatoes than you can eat.

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Miam! Miam!


8 comments:

  1. Ha, hope you took the wipes with you! Looks like F had a ball!
    There's nothing like fresh grown tomatoes, they are amazing. Tomatoes and strawberries, I think, are the best straight from the plant. Mmm.

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  2. Wow, looks delicious! That would be something we would do...I love farms and fresh vegetables...so healthy. Love your photos! Hoping to see you in Paris...that would be fun!

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  3. Your children look so cute and happy to frolic in the beautiful fields of N. CA. ---I love the rolling hills of Sonoma and Napa. Summer's fresh produce is delectable.

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  4. Sounds like your time in California has been wonderful - I'm so happy for you all. The girls look great. Missing you in France - will see you in August when we get back...

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  5. A lovely vacation for your family. My, these little girls are cute. You must be proud! About to embark on the second half of our vacation-- this time on our sailboat, cruising the Pacific Northwest. The weather will be rather unpredictable, but we are used to this. Take care, and safe trip "home." Veronique (French Girl in Seattle)

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  6. Nicola - thank you for sharing this post with us. We are so very honored to have you and your family out to our farm for Capay Tomato, especially since you are only back here on a short stay.

    Your photos are stunning and after whiling away some pleasant time on your blog this afternoon, I know you're working on shooting with a manual setting! I'd say you're doing an awesome job.

    We are so very touched by this post and want to thank you for being part of our CSA family over the years. We wish all the best to you and your family while traveling.

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  7. Your girls look beautiful, happy, and comfortable in their No Cal surroundings among friends! You picked a great season for your return and I loved the story of Capay Tomatoes and the farm.

    Hope you have a safe return to Paris, and I hope to see you in a couple of months!

    Bises,
    Genie

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Bienvenue chez les Berries!
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A bientôt! Nicola

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