We’ve gone through withdrawal from fresh vegetables over the last two weeks while the CSA was closed for its holiday break. Not that we blame the farmer and his staff, mind you. They really do deserve a break from all the hard work. It’s just that, once you’re used to having fresh (we mean picked within the last day or so) vegetables, the vegetables at the supermarket taste pretty much like cardboard.
Of course, during these weeks we do buy some vegetables from the farmers’ market, which helps, but farmers’ markets have a different dynamic. At farmers’ markets, you get to pick and choose, so many farmers bring what sells best. With a CSA, the items in your share are selected based on what’s most productive at the farm and what’s ripe, and not necessarily on what’s your favorite vegetable.
To us, that means two things: one, we get to have the best possible produce and try vegetables that we might never have eaten otherwise, and, two, we need to be more creative in the kitchen, searching out new recipes, instead of relying on the old standards. It’s more challenging to cook that way, but we think it’s a lot more interesting, too.
Anyway, to get to the point of this post, our share this week included:
- Lettuce head (1 huge)
- Swiss chard (1 bunch)
- Mustard greens (1 bunch)
- Tangelos (3)
- Spaghetti squash (1)
- Easter egg radishes (1 bunch)
- Joi Choi (1 bunch) — it’s similar to bok choi
- Purple-top turnips (1 bunch)
Plus, we picked up 3 Yukon Gold potatoes from the surplus basket.
Right now, we’re thinking the Swiss chard will go into a batch of Swiss Chard with Pickled Raisins and Pistachios (a new recipe), and the mustard greens will end up in a Dal Saag, but these may change as we work our way through the week.
Update January 14. We did make a version of Dal Saag from the mustard greens, and we tried out the Swiss Chard with Pickled Raisins and Pistachios, too. For the turnips, we’re still searching for recipes, but we did try a Turnip Soup that’s made like potato soup. The Joi Choi made it into a quick version of pasta primavera and our turnip and radish greens filled out a batch of Greens Latkes. Some of the radishes went into large salads along with some of the lettuce, and the remaining radishes became little crunchy snacks.