Where to Buy Organic Produce in Ottawa
June 4, 2012
My husband and I made a conscious decision 10 years ago to increase the amount of organic fruit and vegetables in our diet. At the time, there was very little organic produce available in the grocery store chains in Ottawa.
After scouting around town, we discovered that the Byward Fruit Market (across the street from the Byward Market building downtown) was just starting an Organics Club. Ten years later, we are the longest running participants in the club and still enjoy receiving our loot every week.
Why do we love this club?
- You commit to 4 weeks at a time
- You can purchase a $20, $30, or $40 basket or fruit, veggies, or a combination of the two
- You can put your basket on hold if you’re away on vacation
- You can specify likes or dislikes (Allergic to avocados? No problem!)
- You never know what you’re going to get from week to week
We were introduced to a lot of “firsts” by the folks at the Byward Fruit Market: first time eating kale, tomatillos, bok choy, asian pears, and so on. I would like to say thanks to owners Isaac and Miriam for committing to provide Ottawans with excellent produce.
Here is a recipe that I made recently to help some friends celebrate their first successful 5K run on race weekend. It was enjoyed by vegans and meat-eaters alike. Enjoy!
Vietnamese Spring Rolls
(Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison)
- 2 ounces cellophane noodles
- 1 carrot
- 1 cup mung bean sprouts, blanched briefly
- 2 cups finely shredded Napa cabbage
- 5 scallions, quartered lengthwise and sliced
- 1/2 cup coarsely chopped cilantro
- 1/2 cup coarsely chopped mint
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced Thai or Italian Basil leaves
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 3 garlic cloves
- 2 serrano chiles, thinly sliced
- juice of 2 limes
- 12 large or 24 small roung Vietnamese rice papers
- 24 butter or Boston lettuce leaves
Soak the noodles in hot water to cover until soft and pliable, about 30 minutes. Snip them into 2-inch lengths and drain.
Using a vegetable peeler, peel the carrot right down to the core, making long, thin strips. Combine them with the noodles, bean sprouts, cabbage, scallions, herbs, and sugar. Smash the garlic in a mortar or food processor with a pinch of salt and chiles to make a paste, then stir in the lime juice. Toss with the vegetables.
Fill a bowl with warm water and spread a clean towel on the counter. Working with one paper at a time, slip it into the water and soak until soft and pliable, about 10 seconds, then remove and set on the towel. Mound some of the vegetable mixture at one end, making a neat little package. When all are done, slice the large rolls in half and stand them, cut side up, on a plate lined with lettuce leaves. Leave small rolls whole. Use the lettuce as an additional wrapper, to keep all the ingredients neatly contained. If the spring rolls aren’t to be served right away, cover them with a barely damp towel and refrigerate. Serve with a peanut dipping sauce.