CSA Share for 2013 Week Ten

Looks like the farm party is going to be a little bit earlier this year than past years (end of September versus beginning of October).  This is good because my son keeps asking me when the farm party is going to be!  In our share this week:

  • lettuce
  • kale
  • mizuna
  • basil
  • green beans
  • beets
  • cucumbers
  • zucchini/summer squash
  • tomatoes
  • nectarines

Anna’s mention of pot stickers got me thinking of a fun pot sticker lunch that I make with my kids when we do have a little time to spare.  We form an assembly line where one person fills the wrappers, one seals them up, and the last person fries them in the pan.  We use either the round or square Nasoya wonton wrappers; I think there’s about 50 to a package, and my family will devour every single one in one sitting.  They are seriously good.

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Homemade Pot Stickers

These pot stickers are best made with an assembly line of three people:  one to fill the wraps, one to seal the wraps, and one to fry the pot stickers.  This recipe calls for Chinese cabbage, but you could add or replace with any other chopped veggie from our share.

  • one package of Nasoya wonton wrappers, either round or square
  • 1/3 pound extra-firm tofu (or cooked pork, etc)
  • 1-1/2 cup shredded/chopped Chinese cabbage (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 tsp chopped garlic or garlic scapes
  • 1/4 cup shredded carrots
  • one small egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 tsp tamari or soy sauce
  • 1 tsp vinegar
  • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tsp fresh grated ginger
  • 1 Tbsp canola oil
  • fresh chopped chives, optional
  • sesame seeds, optional

Mix the tofu, cabbage, carrots, garlic, egg, soy sauce, vinegar, sesame oil, and ginger together in a bowl.  On a large cutting board, lay out the first batch of wraps.  Place 1 tsp of mixture into each wrap.  Dip finger in a bowl of water and rub one-half of the wrap, and then fold the other half over the mixture and seal by pressing the seams together.  Heat the canola oil over medium heat in a frying pan and add some of the pot stickers (as many as you can without them touching each other).  When the bottoms are browned, flip them over with a tongs and brown the other side.  Remove from pan, placing each pot sticker on a plate, and sprinkle with soy sauce, sesame seeds, and chives.  Add a little more oil to the frying pan and fry the next batch.

To stock up on pre-made pot stickers, you can prepare all the pot stickers but before frying, place on a cookie sheet, freeze, then place in a ziploc bag and return to freezer.  When you get the craving, just take a few out, fry them up, and enjoy!

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CSA Share for 2013 Week Eight

4-IMG_5413I tried Anna’s pizza crust recipe in this week’s newsletter, and we loved it!  Such an easy and fun way to use pretty much any of our veggies.  In our share this week:

  • arugula
  • kale/collards
  • mizuna
  • lettuce
  • green beans
  • cucumbers
  • zucchini/summer squash
  • garlic
  • pepper
  • peaches
  • pick your own hot peppers and radishes

Anna’s pizza crust recipe is incredibly easy to make, as long as you have a BIG container because it does expand quite a bit.  I made one batch and it was enough for four pizzas which I made last night, plus some breadsticks which I made this morning.  It’s really just mixing all the ingredients in a bowl or container, putting it in the fridge, and taking out a chunk whenever you’re ready.  As Anna says, it will keep good in the fridge for at least a week.  Love that!

When I took out my portions, I added more flour to make the dough workable, then just placed them on my pans and pushed/rolled/pressed them out to fit the pan (I had to patch up some rips and thin spots).   I then spread a mixture of olive oil, crushed garlic, oregano, salt and pepper onto each crust, then topped some crusts with tomatoes/mozzerella slices/basil, and some with figs/feta/arugula (the basil and arugula was put on after they came out of the oven).  The crust is VERY light, tasty and flavorful, which I sometimes have trouble achieving with other recipes.  And, as I’ve said, it’s EASY EASY EASY!  You could also probably mix herbs and garlic right into the dough, which would make for very tasty breadsticks.

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CSA Share for 2013 Week Seven

I really loved the variety in our share this week, and we even got some delicious fruit!  In our share this week:

  • arugula
  • kale/swiss chard
  • mizuna
  • lettuce
  • green beans
  • cucumbers
  • zucchini/summer squash
  • cabbage
  • peaches
  • apples

How right Farmer Anne is when she says in our newsletter that some members are excited to see the arugula back this week.  I admit I was not a fan at all when I joined our CSA 15 years ago, but now it’s one of my favorites.  The turning point for me was when she wrote in a 2011 newsletter to cook some arugula and cherry tomatoes in olive oil, add hot penne pasta, cheese (I use feta), and lemon juice (see photo above).  I’ve been in love with arugula ever since.  Thanks, Anne!

I’m extra-psyched about the arugula this year because not long ago, I discovered my favorite pizza while eating out one night:  Prosciutto and Fig Pizza with Arugula.  I’ve found an online recipe here, but there are lots of variations out there, so take a look and give it a try.  (You could also make it simpler by adapting it to my Tortilla Pizza recipe.)

CSA Share for 2013 Week Six

What a pickup week it is…those were heavy bags!  In our share this week:

  • lettuce
  • mizuna
  • garlic
  • swiss chard
  • beets
  • summer squash
  • sweet corn
  • lots of extras

If you happened to grab some Chinese cabbage from the extras, this Inside-Out Dumplings recipe is fantastic.  It calls for bok choi, but I think substituting Chinese cabbage would work very well.

Every year it seems every gardener gets an abundance of zucchini and summer squash.  I just wash and dice them up, put them in the blender (I have a Magic Bullet type blender), add just enough water so the mixture will blend, and then pour 2-cup batches into ziploc baggies.  I then freeze these and take them out one at a time for making Zucchini Brownies (recipe from a 2007 farm newsletter).  I’ve been making these ever since I read that “vintage” newsletter, and they are GOOD.  Since it’s so easy to blend and freeze the zucchini and summer squash, it’s a great way to use them all up, and those baggies will last all winter long.

(Image courtesy of www.FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

CSA Share for 2013 Week Five

I am on vacation, so am missing my veggie pickup this week :-(.  However, I can still read our farm’s newsletter and Facebook page to stay in touch :-).  This week, try one of the recipes in my Recipe Box, or explore allrecipes or epicurious for more ideas.  Or, check out one of my favorite cookbooks from your library.  You can also read my previous posts from similar weeks in past years for ideas on what to do with what’s in season.  Enjoy!

CSA Share for 2013 Week Four

swiss chardI love those BIG bunches of greens!  So so healthy for you.  And isn’t that colorful chard gorgeous?  In our share this week:

  • swiss chard
  • beets
  • kale
  • cucumbers
  • basil

If you are wondering what to do with the giant bunches of greens we are getting, try what I’ve been doing for the past few weeks.  I take all my greens (kale, collards, beet greens), rinse them, then saute them all together in a large pot with olive oil till tender; this really reduces their volume.  I then let them cool a bit, add the other ingredients called for in this Kale Salad recipe, and put it all in a container in the fridge.  Then, over the coming week, it’s easy to add a bit of this mixture each day atop Tortilla Pizza, in any type of stir-fry, into burritos or sandwich wraps,  and over pasta.  The big advantage is that you wash, cook, and prepare it once and then you’re done, plus it frees up space in your veggie drawer.

If you know you won’t get to the cooked-down greens this week, just cook them down, let them cool, then throw them in a freezer bag.  They’ll be waiting for you in the fall or winter.

(Top image courtesy of flickr)

CSA Share for 2013 Week Three

Beets this week! Some new members may not be familiar with preparing beets, but it’s worth the effort to learn; beets are tasty and good for you.   In our share this week:

  • beets
  • collards
  • kale
  • summer squash/zucchini
  • garlic scapes extras

Take a look at this New York Times blog post with the great title Beet Recipes Even A Beet Hater Can Love.  However, my favorite recipe is still My Sister’s Beet Salad.  For a nice introduction to collards, check out my post from last year.

(Image courtesy of www.FreeDigitalPhotos.net)