By Britt Richardson,

CSA member since 2016. With a degree in Dietetics, Nutrition and Food Science.*



Kids are naturally curious about even the simplest everyday activities you do, like cooking. Inviting kids to participate in the kitchen is a great way to get them excited about new foods by helping you prepare them. Start small to help them be successful. Here are a few ways to get your toddler or preschooler excited about food through cooking:


First wash hands. Washing hands in soapy water for at least 20 seconds is the best way to start any cooking session, no matter what age you are. Sing songs while you make lots of sudsy bubbles to get the fun started.


Washing foods. Place a small, sturdy stool or chair in front of the sink, fill a large bowl or salad spinner with water, and show your child how to swish the lettuce leaves. This can be a fun, splashy experience, so keep a towel and mop handy!


Cutting soft foods. Seat children at the table with a cutting board and a plastic picnic knife. Give them a soft fruit or vegetable to cut. For example, a banana, strawberries, mushrooms or a soft pear is a great way to start. Sit with them and show how to cut the food. Or, ask an older child to help their sibling.


Veggie prep. Young children can wash vegetables, help tear lettuce leaves for salads, pick herbs off the stems, scrub carrots or potatoes, set the kitchen timer (or tell Siri to set a timer), and pour or dump ingredients into your prep bowls.


Making funny faces. Ask your preschooler to help make “funny face” snack plates for the family. Give them an assortment of veggies such as bell pepper slices, radish or carrot sticks, small lettuce leaves, tomato slices, and peas. Show them ways to arrange the veggies on a plate to make a face. Ask them to make their own funny faces for the rest of the plates.


Enjoy with your favorite dips.Always follow food safety basics. Wash your child’s hands before touching food and whenever they get messy.

Keep breakables and sharp knives out of reach. Avoid working with foods that can be a choking hazard for little ones, like carrot coins and whole grapes.

Ananda at age 4 enjoying one of her favorite foods of late spring: Cucumbers!


*Britt Richardson is an Ananda Gardens CSA Member since 2016. She has a degree in Dietetics, Nutrition and Food Science. Britt has been working with clients to improve their health for 19 years. She is passionate about body positivity and delicious food from local farms, like us, and is currently completing her dietetic internship to become a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist. You can contact her at britt@afullbite.com (her website is currently under development).


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By Britt Richardson


Hello, friends, Britt Richardson from A Full Bite Nutrition here. As a nutritionist, I love the fresh produce delivered from Ananda Gardens, and as a busy professional and parent, I love easy, quick menu ideas. I also hate it when food goes to waste because I didn’t plan my meals very well.


So, Ananda Gardens and I are collaborating to create five flexible meal ideas for each month to give you inspiration for using all of the fresh, nutritious food in your CSA share. If you’re ever at a loss for menu creativity, I’ve got your answer. These ideas will help you turn what you find in your weekly bag into fabulous meals! Follow the links to see Melisa’s favorite recipe ideas.


Meal #1: Spectacular Salad. Use any tender greens or lettuce as your base, adding radishes, bits of herbs, a protein (edamame, chicken, tofu, etc.), seeds or nuts for a crunch, and any colorful addition from your veggie drawer or fruit bowl. I especially like strawberries or blueberries in a spinach salad, and pears or apples match well with baby kale.


Meal #2: Pasta with Greens. Boost the nutrition of your pasta dinner by adding greens to your sauce. Kale or chard is a great addition to your homemade pesto (substitute ½ the basil for greens) and chopped spinach easily cooks quickly in on the stovetop in a jarred (or homemade) sauce.


Meal #3: Burgers with Homemade Pickles. Wondering how to use up turnips or radishes before they soften? A quick brine makes these veggies a delicious side or topping to your favorite burger. Good news: your pickled veggies keep for weeks in the brine!


Meal #4: Egg Bake. Whether you like a quiche with a delicate crust or a hearty breakfast bake, adding greens and herbs to your baked egg dish amps up flavor and vitamins A, C, and K, as well giving the dish a boost in fiber.


Meal #5: Wrap It Up. Use your collard greens (stems removed) to wrap up your favorite fillings, burrito style. From beans and rice to sandwich fillings, using these hearty greens as roll-ups gives you one more way to increase your veggie consumption for the day.


Britt Richardson has being an Ananda Gardens CSA Member since 2016. She has a degree in Dietetics, Nutrition and Food Science and has been working with clients to improve their health for 19 years. She is passionate about body positivity and delicious food from local farms and is currently completing her dietetic internship to become a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist. You can contact her at britt@afullbite.com (her website is currently under development).

Photo by Jennifer Kramer, a happy CSA member since 2016.

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CSA connects individuals and local farms, like Ananda Gardens, in a mutually supportive relationship.In a CSA, people become members of a farm in exchange for recurrent shares of the seasonal harvest.This relationship transcends the usual commercial transaction by having farmers and members share the risks and benefits inherent to agriculture.CSA provides consumers with a deep connection to their food and the people who grow it.


Let's Celebrate!

The first 10 people who sign up and pay by this weekend will get a free bag of spinach and a dozen eggs. "Vermont is a unique place.


We appreciate organically grown produce. We seek out and actively support local family farmers through such programs as our CSAs.


Ananda Gardens does all this and more. They deliver your weekly CSA right to your doorstep if you so desire. And in the process one comes to know the face of the family behind the farm: Patrick, Melisa, and their two children, Ananda and Munay.

You can expect quality, service, and personal attentiveness to individual requests. That all comes as part of the package when you support Ananda Gardens.

What is possible beyond that?

I call it produce with a soul. That is uncommon. Please support them.


Stephanie Hoelscher, on behalf of Ananda Gardens as a full member for her third year

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Ananda Gardens

2416 Horn of the Moon Rd, Montpelier, VT 05602   

                       info@anandagardens                          802.224.6646     802.279.0337

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