Archive for August, 2011

CSA Share for 2011 Week Eleven

Don’t you love pickup this time of year?  Those bags are heavy, with lots of variety inside.   In our share this week:

  • arugula
  • escarole
  • broccoli
  • cabbage
  • eggplant
  • leeks
  • carrots
  • tomatoes
  • green peppers

Today with that eggplant, I made baba ghanouj for the first time.  I followed this recipe over at littlebluehen.com, but cut it in half.  This version is a lot like hummus, and quite easy to prepare.  Having another eggplant recipe to choose from is always helpful.

I love cooking with leeks, and if it was cooler out I would make a leek and potato soup.  See my previous post for that recipe, and also a slaw recipe using our broccoli.  With the escarole, I think we’re going to make Farmer Mike’s Escarole, Beans, and Sausage recipe (see this week’s newsletter).  I’ve made variations of this, but this time we want to follow the recipe verbatim.

Also, I urge you to try Farmer Anne’s suggestion for using the arugula, of which I’ve been using a slightly-adapted version:  heat some olive oil, saute cherry tomatoes with a big handful of arugula, then add some feta, cooked penne pasta, and a little lemon juice.  I’ve been whipping up this little treat several times a week since reading about it in our newsletter from a few weeks ago (under the What’s New In Your Share This Week section).

What To Do With That Cabbage

Because the temp went down into the 50’s last night (and will tonight as well), I used it as a sign 😉  that I needed to make some soup for lunch.  So, if you still have cabbage in your fridge, QUICK, make some cabbage soup!

I made a hot and sour cabbage and tofu soup from my Moosewood Restaurant Cooking for Health cookbook, but I also found some fantastic-sounding recipes over at tastespotting; just type “cabbage soup” into the search bar, and you’ll be directed to other sites with delicious recipes and beautiful photos.  I think the Sweet and Sour Cabbage Soup looks good, and I’m really looking forward to making Simple Cabbage and Bean Soup.  I’m just happy that cabbage lasts so long in the fridge, waiting patiently for these somewhat cooler days.

CSA Share for 2011 Week Ten

I loved that one hot pepper!  Somehow, getting just the one made it more “savorable.”  Or maybe, after reading the newsletter, we sensed and appreciated its survivalist nature. 😉

In our share this week:

  • kale
  • lettuce
  • swiss chard
  • cucumber
  • summer squash
  • Tropea onions
  • tomatoes
  • garlic
  • and a hot pepper

Ahhhh, Tropea onions.  I’m excited for members who are getting their first taste of these sweet treats.  As Farmer Anne says, they do need to be cooked to bring forth their sweetness.  Some interesting reading on Tropea onions can be found here, where this Italian guy (actually, a first-generation Italian-American living right here in Massachusetts) states that in Tropea, Italy, you can find red onion marmalade, and even red onion gelato!  So, after some searching, I did find a Tropea onion marmalade recipe here.  I haven’t tried it, but let me know if you do.

By the way, I have been diligently pureeing my zucchini and summer squash, pouring them in one-cup portions in a ziploc bag, and storing them in my freezer.  This will simplify my winter-time baking of these delicious and somewhat healthy Zucchini Brownies.  The recipe actually calls for two cups of grated zucchini, but since I always make half-batches, I freeze in one-cup portions, and I find that pureeing (rather than grating) the zucchini in a blender is easier and works just as well.  If your blender is a bit stubborn getting started on the zucchini, start with just a few chunks and a little bit of water, and when those get going, slowly add the remaining chunks.

CSA Share for 2011 Week Nine

Those white beets sure look interesting.  And I think Farmer Anne is right; I don’t remember ever getting white beets in our share, so these are a new treat for me.  In our share this week:

  • kale
  • lettuce
  • cabbage
  • white beets
  • broccoli
  • summer squash
  • cucumbers
  • tomatoes
  • garlic

I have so many cucumbers that I even resorted to researching how to freeze them successfully.  I came up with this Method for Freezing Cucumbers recipe and tried it out yesterday.  I’ll let you know how it turns out when I break them out of the freezer in the future.  The recipe calls for 12 (pickling) cucumbers, but I only had the larger cucumbers and so used about three of them.  After a little more internet research, I gathered that pickling cucumbers result in a crispier, more flavorful (due to their thinner skins) pickle than the larger slicing cucumbers, but either will work.

A member commented a few weeks ago that she, too, is on a “pickle mission.”  It was then I realized that I haven’t even tried making bread and butter pickles in all my CSA years.  So, I found this Refrigerator Bread and Butter Pickles recipe, which is very similar to the freezing method except for the addition of the spices.

So, don’t let those cucumbers go to waste…join me and start pickling!

Veggie Calzones

If you’re looking for a lunch that’s a bit out of the ordinary, a veggie calzone should do the trick.  To make these, we just used our standard pizza dough recipe (see my post from last year), filled half of it with veggies and cheese, pinched it closed and baked at 350 degrees for 10 minutes or so.

Sauteed arugula and cherry tomatoes with olive oil would be great in these; you wouldn’t even need a tomato sauce (or have some on the side just for dipping).  Each person can make their own custom-calzone, and everyone walks away happy!  😉

CSA Share for 2011 Week Eight

We’re certainly getting a variety of veggies this time of year.  I was glad to see the radishes, arugula, and mizuna.  It took me a few years to really appreciate the mizuna and especially the arugula, but I really look forward to them now.  In our share this week:

  • lettuce
  • mizuna
  • arugula
  • bok choy
  • summer squash
  • radishes
  • cucumber
  • green beans
  • tomatoes

I took Farmer Anne’s advice from this week’s newsletter and sauteed up some arugula with cherry tomatoes, then added some penne pasta, feta cheese, and lemon juice (and pepper).  Fantastic!  The lemon juice was a very tasty touch.  I’ve also made a pesto with the arugula, just following my standard pesto recipe but replacing the basil with arugula (see my post from last year).

Since last year, my favorite way of enjoying those radishes is on bread with butter (see Radish, Butter and Bread over at whatscookingamerica.net).   Simple, easy and delicious.  And I have to say, wow, are those tomatoes are delicious!  They ripen up beautifully on the counter, don’t they?