15 minutes with CSA member: Jasmine Baxter

First, Jasmine Baxter once drank cobra blood. Second, she likes healthy food and nutrition. That makes her bad ass. Don’t you want to get to know her better?

Each week the Collard Courier will spend 15 minutes talking with a member about their thoughts on food and the surrounding world. Jasmine was the ideal first candidate because she’s our nutrition blogger, submitting weekly tips/factoids about what we’re eating. (Expect her first post later today.)

Nearly four years ago Red Hook gained resident Jasmine Baxter. She was leaving San Francisco and thought she’d be headed home to Boston, but a fortuitous apartment situation brought her to us instead.

“I quickly I fell in love with the neighborhood and have been here ever since,” she says.

Her involvement with the CSA is a perfect fit for her long-term goals: In January she turned 30 and decided to enroll in the Institute for Integrative Nutrition to become a Holistic Health Counselor.

“My hopes are to work with women of all ages who are struggling with their weight and body image. I plan to help them build healthier lifestyles and feel empowered by their relationship with food and their own bodies.”

And who doesn’t need more of that?

What was the food culture in your house growing up? I spent a lot of time with my Grandma who was Italian and amazing cook. She always had something on the stove or in the oven. She really loved feeding her friends and family.

Growing up we always ate lots of fruits and vegetable. Some of the other staples were stuffed pepper, eggplant Parmesan, and pasta and red sauce.

One food you won’t you eat? Meat. I eat mostly vegetables and some fish.

Favorite vegetable? Asparagus and green beans.

Favorite food experience? Going apple picking in the fall and eating the super crisp apples right off the tree. I have fond memories of going as a child and still try to go every year.

Favorite appliance? Immersion blender.

Favorite food book or memoir: Right now I am reading What to Eat by Marion Nestle. It has been super interesting and informative.

She wrote the book as if she was walking through the grocery store with you. She explains how what we eat is influenced by marketing trends, labeling and the influence of big business. Plus, she explains what it means in a simple and witty way.

I really have been enjoying the book and have a better understanding of what is important to me to invest my extra dollars in at the grocery store.

Most disastrous kitchen or garden experiment: I tried to make homemade Twinkies. The recipe sounded fun, easy and delicious.

It was none of the above. The outcome looked and tasted disgusting.

Why are you involved in Red Hook CSA?I joined the CSA because it is amazing that we can walk only a few blocks get vegetables grown right here in Brooklyn.

What’s the best lunch option near you? I work in Soho and my two favorites are Balthazar’s lunch counter or Hampton Chutney.

What inspires you? Nature, especially flowers.

Your opinion: Does talking to plants help them grow? Yes

Best piece of advice you’ve ever been given? Trust your gut.

Tell us one thing about yourself that would surprise us. I drank cobra blood in Vietnam.

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