Shungiku, Minutina, and More!

weekly CSA produce
The shungiku is the frilly leafy stuff in the middle that looks somewhat like parsley leaves; the minutina is in the small bag just in front of the Swiss chard.

Shungiku? What’s that? Minutina? What’s up with that?

One of the most fun things about being part of the CSA is that you sometimes get produce that you’ve never heard of before, such as shungiku and minutina. Now, we’ve had shungiku before and we really like it, but we do remember that when it first appeared, it was labeled as edible chrysanthemum. We saw it and we thought, “huh, edible chrysanthemum, what in the world are we going to do with that?” Then to top it off, there was an extra bundle in the surplus basket — many people seemed as stumped as we were with this new vegetable — but we thought, “why not?” and put it in our bag.

It turns out that we loved shungiku from the start. Yes, it does taste like chrysanthemum smells (chrysanthemums are poisonous, so we don’t know what they taste like) , which is odd at first, but it’s just delicious, with a crunchy stem, reminiscent of celery in texture.

Minutina, on the other hand, is completely new to us so we’re looking forward to trying it.

Produce items this week:

  • Shungiku (1 bunch)
  • Minutina (1 bag)
  • Swiss chard (1 bunch)
  • Sweet potatoes (2)
  • Lettuce (2 heads)
  • Grapefruit (3)
  • Dandelion greens (1 bunch) traded for more grapefruit
  • Green cauliflower (1 head)

We’ve already eaten the shungiku; we did a quick stir-fry with carrots, mushrooms, and shungiku over rice. Everything else? we’ll see.

Update March 5. The minutina, which we’d never had before, went into tossed salads (we had those two heads of lettuce to eat, which means salads nearly every day), adding a slightly salty taste. The chard we steamed as a side, and, because we like eating grapefruit just as one would eat oranges, we had them along with lunches. We still haven’t eaten the cauliflower or the sweet potatoes, but that will be happening soon.

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