My Montreal CSA box – baskets #1 & #2

I’ve mentioned the CSA I belong to many times and I’ve also been eagerly awaiting the start of the summer season – which began last week. I’m sure many people who live in the USA and some Canadians on the west coast are able to enjoy fresh local vegetables all year round, but the growing season in Montreal runs from about May to October.

There are a ton of CSA farms that serve the Montreal area, but the reason we chose La Ferme Cadet-Roussel was because the drop-off location was about a block from our apartment. It doesn’t hurt that the family patriarch, Jean Roussel, was born in France to a family that was already practicing organic and biodynamic farming.

Last year I wanted to make lists of what we received each week and try to compare our CSA to other CSAs in Montreal and other cities. This would be not only to see if my CSA was competitive with the others in terms of price, but also to compare the variety of products that we were getting those of other CSAs. I never followed through on this idea, but this year is different:

WEEK #1 (June 28 2007):

2 pints strawberries
1 bunch radishes
dozen potatoes
2 large zucchini
1 bag dried speckled kidney beans
2 Boston lettuce
purple kale
large bag of snow peas
garlic scapes

1 dozen eggs (purchased – $4)

WEEK #2(July 5 2007):

bunch of purple kale
bunch of garlic scapes
bunch of snap peas
bag of peas in pods
bunch of basil
bunch of chives
3 kohlrabi
3 potatoes
1head of purple curly lettuce
1head of chicory or some other weird lettuce
1 small head of green boston lettuce
3 zucchini
3 red tomatoes (hydroponic)
1 yellow tomato (hydroponic)

Our CSA offers 3 sizes of baskets: small, medium , and large. We chose the medium basket which cost us $567.00 for the season. That’s in Canadian dollars, which is approximately USD$540.00. We get 19 deliveries, which puts each basket at just under CAD$30.00. The amount of produce will increase as the growing season progresses, so what we get now is (hopefully) not a fair representation of what we’ll be getting 4 weeks from now. So far we’re pretty happy with it and we’re working hard to eat it all.

Breakfast yesterday was a scramble (I prefer the scramble to the omelet) made with kale and garlic scapes. Last night we grilled a marinated tofu and a nice assortment of vegetables.

Let us know what you get in your CSA box, and I’ll also try to get lists and prices form other Montreal CSAs and list the results here.



12 Responsesto “My Montreal CSA box – baskets #1 & #2”

  1. limesarah says:

    Our CSA (Waltham, MA, USA) only gives one size of share, but we’re splitting it with someone. Half of it yesterday was:

    One (HUGE) red-leaf lettuce
    Two cucumbers (which could have been green or yellow zucchini)
    Half a pound of spinach (which could have been chard)
    1/4 pound of assorted Asian braising greens
    half a bunch of carrots
    half a bunch of scallions
    Some PYO sugar snap peas, fava beans, and lemon basil (there were also shelling peas, snow peas, flowers, and some more herbs, which we didn’t take any of)

    We still have some garlic scapes, kale, and a little bit of broccoli from last week’s share.

  2. Simon says:

    My CSA season started a few weeks earlier than you I think, I get 22 baskets for the season. My CSA is Jardins de Tessa, for the exact same reasons as you, its delivered litterally next door to me. You have a nice spread going.. anyway here is what I received last week:

    -3 small broccolis
    -1 yellow and 2 green zuchinis
    -2 bunches of garlic flowers
    -1 big bag of basil
    -2 heads of lettuce
    -1 big bunch of kale
    -about 1 pound of beets (made some awesome borcht over the weekend)
    -2 kohlrabi or cabbge turnip (a red and a green)
    -1 big bunch of green onions.

    PS: I should’ve said hi at the Chili Cook-Off at Barfly the other night.. I think I saw you there…

  3. Peter aka Nosher of the North says:

    limesarah – Can we ask how much your box costs? I’ve been to Waltham many times – my sister used to live there.

    Simon – I know of ‘Tessa’ – how much does it cost?
    And yes – I was an official judge at the chili cook-off – you should have said hello. I wish we had broccoli in our boxes, which is why I am trying to grow it in my community garden plot.

  4. Simon says:

    Tessa was 490$ with the Equiterre fee, and it is 20 deliveries, I thought it was 22. There is only one size for the baskets though, They say it is enough for two, or one big vegetable eater. I am currently struggling to eat it all by myself.. it is a lot of veggies for a single dude. I think it would be comfortable for two with a little shopping on the side or, like you, a community garden.

  5. Colleen says:

    I just got back from Montreal. I never stopped to think about the growing season there – the weather was absolutely beautiful for us.

  6. Peter aka Nosher of the North says:

    Collen – drop by anytime between December and March to experience arctic winter wonderland. The only local or regional produce available at that time comes from the previous autumn.

  7. Vikki says:

    This is my first time ever I subscribed to a CSA, and I’m with Tessa too.

    I received two baskets so far, and the quantity is just enough for two people if you get some other stuff on the side for more variety. For price however, I suspect it is somewhat more expensive than Tau’s in Brossard.

    After reading Simon’s list from last week, I’m sad to report that, instead of his big bag of basil, I got an extra bunch of beet greens instead (without the beets)!

  8. Corn Maven says:

    Hi Vikki,

    Sautéed beet greens are delicious! But you need to eat them right away, as they don’t stay fresh long.

  9. limesarah says:

    Peter — there’s some information here: A full share costs $500, plus an optional $100 for a winter share and $65 for a fruit share from a partnering orchard.

  10. Vikki says:


    Yes, the greens were delicious, and they’re rich in iron too (I think). I thought they might be a bit too bitter so I sauteed them with some pesto to even out the taste — it was great.

  11. Tim says:

    Hi Peter, you’re the first google hit for “Montreal Growing Season” right now…

    Oddly, I’m in the same CSA as Limesarah, and the fee for the year was $525 (USD) for a full-share which is designed for a family of 4 and starts delivery in May/June and runs through Oct. A half-share is fine for 2.

    We’ve also bought a winter share of 2-pick-ups (big boxes of about 15kg) for another $100USD.

  12. Peter aka Nosher of the North says:

    It’s great to see comments about this so late after the original posting!
    I have been negligent in posting about any recent CSA pickups, but I promise to get a photo and list of today’s bounty.