A Healthy Dose of Veggies

My brother-in-law John Paul is part-owner  of an organic farm - Real Food Farms - right here in Nashville. Cynthia and JP are some of our closest friends and we decided to start a food trade to try and eat healthier as a group.

The Process:
At the beginning of the week I pick up a load of veggies from JP and he takes a load of veggies back to his place. Monday and Tuesday each household cooks a unique, healthy, veggie-based and tasty meal for 4 adults. Then each couple eats 1/2  of what they made and packages up the other half for a swap on Wednesday resulting in local, organic, veggie dinners 4 nights a week, but only cooking 2 nights a week!

The Challenge
One of the hardest parts about cooking with real foods (foods not found in a box or a bag) and especially real foods that are freshly picked (read: local) is the prep work that goes into each meal. (washing and cutting the veggies). Also, sometimes then coming up with a filling meal that is also healthy and tastes good from what seems like a random assortment of veggies can sometimes be challenging.

The List

  • Swiss chard
  • Carrots
  • Beets
  • Radishes
  • Broccoli
  • Kale
  • Green Onions
  • Eggs
  • Yogurt
  • Milk
  • Kohlrabi
  • Cauliflower 

The Creations:
Each meal is supposed to utilize as many veggies as possible and is suppose to have limited non-organic extras. Here are a couple example of things I've made over the past few weeks.

Fresh Mozzarella and Roasted Veggie Pizza

Homemade Pesto, Garlic, Mushroom and Broccoli Pasta

Spicy Veggie Tacos

Creamy Bean and Greens Soup

Mixed Veggie Feta Quiche

Mixed Veggie Thai Peanut Noodles

Black bean, Tomato, Carrot and Chard Jambalaya

The Results:
So far I FEEL way healthier. I haven't noticed much of a change on the scale, but my energy level is up and I really have enjoyed being creative in the kitchen - even though sometimes it's a grind to chop and clean all those earthy goods. The biggest payoff so far has been in our check-book. Before we were eating out 4 or 5 times a week and now we eat out only about 2 times a week and it's usually on the weekends! It's been perfect as a scaled back income family. :)

I'm thinking about starting a weekly series walking you all through one of my vegetable concoctions. Would that be of interest to anyone out there? Let me know!


  1. Heck yeah! Will you post recipes (or a link to recipes), also? Everything looks beautiful:)

  2. Yes. I would be sooo interested. All of these look delicious. I just emailed you a recipe from DeVonna Taylor for cauliflower crust for pizza. I have not tried it yet - but every recipe I've gotten from her has been good.

    What a great idea for you all to trade food like that. Maybe I can talk Aunt Kathy and Uncle Dale into it....

  3. Sis! This is amazing! I wish I lived closer so I could cash in our your delicious veggie goodness!

    I would totally be into reading your recipes :) I've been cooking a bit (and I really a very LITTLE bit) and I could use some inspiration!

  4. What a great idea! No one should have to cook every night :-(