Early August CSA box: Four ways

There’s always a flurry of excitement in the office when the weekly delivery of CSA boxes arrives.  We peek in the boxes.  There’s generally some oohing and ahhing over the unusual items and then the recipe-brainstorming begins.  I thought it would be interesting to compare a few people’s weekly meals to see how each of us approached the same ingredients.

Last week’s CSA box contained the following items:

Potatoes
Carrots
Tomatoes
Lettuce
Beets with their greens
Blueberries
Raspberries
Eggplant or kale (depending on the box)
Fennel
Onions
Parsley

~~~

Janet, who was heading out of town on vacation, sent me this note:

“This week I made potato fennel soup (recipe from the Moosewood cookbook) and a kale and white bean (and potato) soup from a
recipe that I got online. We also boiled the beets and ate them plain and had the beet greens sauteed up with some garlic.”

She froze her soups for a later date.

~~~

Alison made the following:

Wednesday night:  Raspberries went straight into the rumtopf I started a few months ago; I snacked on some blueberries.  Put the greens from the beets in the fridge, but left the potatoes and beets in a wide bowl on the counter to cure.   It’s unlikely that I’ll try eating these up this week – my fridge is still full from leftovers from a party the previous weekend, and I’m going to need to make finishing those leftovers a priority!

Thursday:
Breakfast  – toast and some blueberries
Lunch – home grown green beans sauteed with some garlic and a CSA tomato
Dinner – made a simple ‘throw it together’ soup with some leftover chicken and pork, stock, and CSA potatoes, carrots, parsley, and home grown green beans

Friday:
Breakfast: Foxhill vanilla yogurt with blueberries
Lunch: scrambled eggs with a tomato and some CSA cilantro from 2 weeks ago.  (still in very good shape!)
Dinner:  BBQed some smoky wild goose sausage my brother made.  In preparation for a big canning session of making dilly beans, I opened up the last jar of dilly beans from last year.

Saturday:
Breakfast: a quick bite of toast for breakfast before heading out of town to the Hubbards Farmers Market. Lunch on the road.
Dinner – Brought a big salad to a potluck.  CSA lettuce and shaved fennel, arugula and thai basil (both of which I picked up at the Hubbards market), wild blueberries from my yard, topped with a vinaigrette made with some of my new homemade hot currant jelly melted down with some red wine vinegar and olive oil.  SO GOOD!

Roll Kuchen with watermelon

Roll Kuchen with watermelon

Sunday:
Lunch: Sandwich with some leftover roasted pork, homemade bread, leftover hummus, and some red currant jelly.
Supper: Roll kuchen and watermelon.  This was the ultimate summer meal when I was growing up in a Mennonite town – roll kuchen is a fried bread, not too unlike Beaver tails.  Accompanied by a sugar baby watermelon that I bought at Pete’s – a classic summer meal when I was a kid.  (But no CSA veggies consumed today!  Uh oh….)
 
Holiday Monday:  
breakfast:  leftover roll kuchen
Lunch: tabouli with csa parsley, onion and tomatoes, cuke from Hubbards market – and fried clams.
Supper:  Chicken and hummus sandwich made with the last of the party leftovers.

Tuesday:
Breakfast: peach and homemade toast with Foxhill cheese
Lunch: made tabouli at work with parsley and cukes from the Hubbards farmers market and a bit of my CSA onion
Supper: more smoked sausage from my brother, fried up with some kale from the hubbards market, topped with a bit of piccalilli.  (A really good combo!)

Wednesday:
CSA day again!  I didn’t eat my beet greens which are still in the fridge.  The eggplants were also left over – so I made sure I ate them Wednesday night, along with some of the new box’s tomatoes, a zuke from the garden, onions, smoked sausage and feta, over rice.

~~~

Mhari has a half share. She ate all of her berries the first night, while snacking on the couch.

Her meals this week included:

  • Potato, tomato, zucchini and carrot gratin
  • Lettuce, grated fennel and carrot salad with basil, honey dressing
  • Steamed potato, bean and kale with a butter and kale stem sauce
  • roasted beet salad with green onion and goat cheese
  • tomato, green onion, parsley and feta omelette

~~~

And what did I make?  Well, as soon as I saw the eggplant, my first thought was ratatouille!  But I decided to save that for a weekend night, when I’d have more time to cook.  My meals this week were as follows:

Wednesday night we were heading out to a get-together and needed a fast meal, so we quickly sauteed onions, fennel, carrot, the last of the previous week’s cherry tomatoes, and some basil from the garden, adding a splash of cream at the end and served it over pasta.

Thursday was berries, cheese and eggs for breakfast, salad for lunch, and frittata (with potatoes and beet greens) for dinner.

Friday’s breakfast was polenta.  Lunch was leftover frittata.  For dinner we made french style lentils with wilted beet greens.  To make it, you boil lentils (1-1/2  to 2 cups dried lentils: du puy or regular green lentils).  In a separate pot, slowly caramelize 1-2 chopped onions in butter on low heat.  This can take 20-40 minutes depending on your patience for caramelizing.  Add a teaspoon of mustard seeds.  When the lentils are done, drain and add to the onions, with a glass of white wine (Jost makes a pinot grigio that works well) and a pinch of salt and pepper.  Add a tablespoon of prepared mustard, a splash of balsamic vinegar, and a splash of lemon juice.  You can also add a clove or two of garlic and some herbs (like basil, rosemary or sage) at this point.  Cook covered on low heat until everything is nice and soft.  Add a couple handfuls of spinach or beet greens, turn the heat off and keep covered until the greens wilt.  After 5-10 minutes, stir and serve.

On Saturday, I had a pancake craving.  So, we made cornmeal berry pancakes.  Lunch was leftovers.  And then I made a big batch of tabouli for an out of town BBQ potluck.  (We also picked up some amazing sausages from the new butcher shop in the Hydrostone, Highland Drive Storehouse.  You should check it out, if you haven’t been there yet!)

Sunday morning, our hosts made a giant pile of waffles, to which we contributed the rest of our CSA berries and then we headed back home.  Lunch was more salad, this time with grated carrot, chick peas, and boiled eggs (and lettuce, obviously).  For dinner, the much anticipated ratatouille!  In addition to the eggplant, the recipe also used the last of the tomatoes from the CSA box, and a zucchini from the garden.  We served the ratatouille with our Off the Hook haddock, which was lightly breaded and pan-fried.

Monday: We cooked up a hearty breakfast of potatoes, salsa and cheese, and ate Sunday’s leftovers for lunch.  For dinner, I harvested several handfuls of green beans from the garden and a zucchini.  Along with fennel and a couple of carrots from the CSA box and some pesto from the freezer, these became pasta salad (with grated carrot, sauteed zucchini, chick peas and pesto mayo) and green bean salad with fennel.

By Tuesday, my creativity had lagged.  I was down to 2 carrots and 3 beets.  While I could have made a feta beet salad, I was craving homemade pizza – and I had pesto in the freezer and zucchini in the garden.  So, it was leftovers for lunch and pizza for dinner and the remaining root veggies will wait for another day.

And back to CSA day once again!

Yours in food,

Marla

Next week’s box of veggies!

4 thoughts on “Early August CSA box: Four ways

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