Tuesday, July 20, 2010
Those of you who follow our twitter feed may have seen me announce a personal goal - to eat solely farmer's market veggies this week! This is not a culinary challenge - I have no problems eating/cooking fresh veggies every day of my life...it's more of a shopping challenge. In western Massachusetts we were lucky to have oodles of charming farmer's markets and plenty of local independent grocers all supporting local farms by stocking their products. It made supporting local agriculture very easy. It is one of the things I most miss about Massachusetts, aside from our friends!!! In Pittsburgh, it is not as easy to support your local agronomist. You really need to be committed to doing so and if you live on my side of the city, you need to have the time to go out of your way to purchase fresh, local food as the big chain groceries do not stock local produce. What we eat and where it comes from is very important to me. But, in the year we have lived in Pittsburgh, the time challenge and proximity to buying local food has made it difficult to keep that commitment. I looked into joining a CSA, but it was really too far out of our budget this year (buying a house, leaving a full time salary, renovating a money-pit, growing a business, etc. etc. has left little money left over). So, for the next few weeks I have allotted time to visit a few of the farmer's markets closer to me. My goal this week is to cook up and share recipes using local produce/products.
I had planned to begin last night.
I started by washing the dishes to make room for dinner preparations then cleaned and prepped the veggies...all the while noticing that my sink had decided it did not want to let the dish water drain out. A half hour later, it still had not drained. So I found a plunger and began plunging only to have the backed up water spew out of the other side of the split sink drain. gross.
Jeremy took a look at it and found that the issue was not the drain trap (a typical backed up sink problem) and we headed to the basement to check out the main plumbing stack. We found rivers of dirty water draining across the basement floor. The previous owners of this house were DIY-ers in the truest sense...only everything they did was completely jury-rigged and crappy. Their main plumbing stack drain system was a series of pipes wedged together with a bucket to catch what leaked through the wedged together parts of the pipe all feeding into an opening in the floor where they poured concrete around one of the pipes to keep it in place. Those pipes are so backed up (from years of junk going down the drain in combination with a poorly done plumbing job) that they are now just pouring water through the wedged together parts of the pipe and onto the basement floor. also gross.
So we had to shut the water off and I did not get to finish making dinner. Instead we ordered pizza. blurgh to the burgh. I don't even like delivery pizza.
Tonight I will try again...look for recipes tomorrow!
If you don't see any, you'll know things did not go as smoothly as we had hoped and Jeremy is still working on the plumbing.