csa roundup: week 15

csa wk15

Talk about taking me out of my elements.  After getting me settled into a usual share for the last few weeks, this csa was a curveball.  Of course it was very welcomed – I was getting tired of the typical tomatoes, carrots, corn, onion, and potatoes baskets. Having to google and search Pinterest for several items this week is definitely a win.

I got:

1 bag mixed beans
1 piece eight ball zucchini
2 ears corn
1 bag Jalapeño peppers
1 bag mixed sweet peppers
1 bag baby eggplants
1 bag garlic
1 bag tomatoes

Here’s what I am thinking for this share

The beans will be sautéed as a side to dinner, or we’ll use them in an Asian dish.

The zucchini and corn are going into dinner tonight, I’ll be making zucchini and corn fritters with those, so if it turns out good, I’ll be posting a recipe!

The garlic, tomatoes and Jalapeños get used all over the place and I love having them fresh instead of purchasing them at the store.

I am a huge fan of the sweet peppers.  They had the slightest spice taste to them so it’s perfect.  I used some in a Shrimp pad thai I made yesterday and plan  on using the rest for some cheesesteaks I’ll be making soon.

Lastly, I am going to treat the eggplants like they are a large eggplant, and will be frying them and serving them with some Halumi cheese.  If you’ve never tried that, do it.  So simple, yet so tasty!

As for last week’s meals, the carrots, tomatoes, potatoes, and onions got used all over the place.  My co-worker got the eggplant.  I made some awesome Bolognese with tomato sauce that we had over the spaghetti squash. And the indian lemon cucumbers were sooo gross I couldn’t eat them.  Hey, you win some and you lose some.

veggie on
– shirley

Advertisements

csa roundup: week 14

wk14

This week’s basket is loaded as usual!  This is what we got:

1 Italian eggplant
1 bag potatoes
2 indian lemon cucumbers
1 bag red slicing tomatoes
1 bag orange carrots
1 spaghetti squash
2 sweet onion

My co-worker and I split this, so he got the eggplant right off the bat.

I’ll be making spaghetti squash with Bolognese for dinner this week.

The potatoes, onions, tomatoes, and carrots get used all over the place, as usual.

The indian lemon cucumbers were new to me.  I just cut one up and tasted it and I think I found a new vegetable I don’t like!  I would discribe it as a mix between a cucumber and an orange.  It has the texture combination of an apple and a cucumber, but tastes like an orang-y cucumber.  Gross!  So we’ll see what I do with that guy.

As for last week, I made a loaded salad using the corn, tomatoes, pickles, and a few other vegetables I had on hand.

The tomatoes and parsley were used to make salsa that got used all week long in meals.

The cabbage is still in the fridge, but destined for some fish tacos this week.

And the watermelon!  I cut it up this weekend and discovered it is a yellow watermelon! I didn’t even know that was possible!!!  It was just as tasty as a red watermelon, and it’s great to have that in the fridge to snack on.

Hope everyone is having a great week!

– veggie on
shirley

csa roundup: week 13

csa wk13

You guys know I love my csa. I found out something new and exciting about it today.  They offer bulk Roma tomatoes for purchase!  20 pounds of tomatoes!  Sharon and I are up for it and will be making a big big batch of tomato sauce with this.  I am excited to have the ability to freeze the sauce and use it all winter long.  No more canned tomatoes for us! And we’ll definitely be posting the tomato sauce recipe on here, it’s a family favorite for pastas, enchiladas, and pizza.

As for the normal share this week, I got

1 watermelon
1 bag roma tomatoes
1 pink red grape tomatoes
5 ears sweet corn
1 head cabbage
1 bunch curly parsley
1 bag orange carrots

First and foremost, if you read this blog here and there, you’ve seen pictures of my cat on here.  I’m pretty sure our cat, Cali, was a dog in another life.  Or maybe she just wants to be a dog in this life.  I swear if I let her, she would eat human food only.  Her current favorite – pita chips.  I’m serious.  I turned away from the table as I was taking this pictures and found her eating parsley.  I guess it’s better than the time she decided to eat green onions. Ew.

csa wk13 cali

Anywho…..I am thinking of making a fresh salad with the corn and grape tomatoes.

The watermelon will get cut up and eaten as a snack or end up in a smoothie.  I love having fresh fruit at home for this during the summertime.

I will probably use the roma tomatoes to make another batch of tomato sauce.

While I’m not a big fan of parsley, it will make a great garnish to a dish or be used in some fresh salsa.

Last week was another busy week for utilizing the share veggies in our meals.  I made fried rice using the carrots and some corn that was left over from the week before.

I was going to stuff the squash with spinach and sausage, since that was so tasty last time.  But, I realized that the squash were fairly small and not very…um…stuffable.  So, I improvised!  Instead I used the same flavors in a stir fry of sorts.  It was cubed squash, sausage, spinach, and bacon (bacon makes everything taste better).  I was feeling lazy and unfortunately didn’t photograph this, which is unfortunate becuase it came out so great.  Next time.

The red tomatoes and roma tomatoes became tomato sauce that’s ready for me to use for dinner.  The lemon basil was incredibly fragrant, and I added that to the sauce as well.

Lastly, and sadly, I came home on Monday to find the cantaloup had started to go rotten.  I can’t believe it happened so quickly.  I guess that’s fresh and organic for ya!

csa roundup: week 12

csa wk 12
Happy Sunday everyone!  To say that last week was crazy would be an understatement.  The only upside is that I wrapped things up on Friday afternoon at work and headed straight up to the mountains.  Even though we got a decent amount of rain, the skies cleared up pretty quickly after the storms and we were able to enjoy some beautiful times out on the lake.  Now, I’m back home, mentally preparing for the week to come.  If only I could spend more time on the lake or outdoors with my friends and family.

I promised that I would get back on board with cooking when I posted about last week’s share and I think I was successful:

The tomatoes were used in a couple things – salsa and J’s homemade (totally from scratch) chili.

The cabbage was huge and I’ve still got about half of it to use this week.  I used a bit of it for fish tacos and sautéed some cabbage “steaks” with salt and pepper as a side to a meal.  I was a bit apprehensive when I saw this online, but it’s as simple as it sounds and came out really great!

The beets and carrots were a winner! I sautéed them together as a side to dinner.  I’ll be posting a recipe because it was a hit!

The garlic got used all around and I couldn’t believe how fast it disappeared.

And the corn and gherkins are still in the fridge, I’m thinking of making some sort of soup with the corn and pickling the gherkins.

It was another heavy basket this week.  An added bonus of the share is that as summer continues and farmers have a plathora of fruit, we get some in our share.  And other bonus that you’ll see in there are the hot peppers.  They are from one of my coworker’s gardens and I’m excited to use them this week too!  Here’s the roundup:

1 bag red tomatoes
1 bag rainbow carrots
1 bunch lemon basil
4 green pattypan squash
1 bag red roma tomatoes
1 heirloom cantaloupe

I’m excited about the abundance of tomatoes!  They will be used for some home made tomato sauce (the peppers are going to be perfect in there too!).

The carrots are very colorful and a honey or maple saute with them will look beautiful.

I’m thinking of going back to the stuffed pattypan squash since they were very tasty and I thought more successful than other uses.

While I welcomed more fresh basil, I am not used to lemon basil.  I can see it pairing really well with tomato sauce or even a white sauce with garlic pasta.

And the cantaloupe will likely be cut up and kept in a bowl in the fridge for snacking or pairing with breakfast.  I love having some sort of fruit in the fridge for this – usually it’s strawberries – so we’ll be welcoming the change.

csa wk12_2

Enjoy the rest of your Sunday and here’s to (hopefully) a quiet week

Veggie on
– shirley

csa roundup: week 11

As sharon said, it’s been a busy couple weeks in our households.  We’re loving the gorgeous weather we (finally) got.  Weekends away and late nights compounded with a couple of insane weeks at work (ugh) meant that thinking outside the box and experimenting in the kitchen took a back seat.  It’s alright, it’s a new week and I’m excited to cook.

csa wk 11

This week, my share was LOADED!

2 ears sweet corn
1 bunch orange carrots
1 head green cabbage
3 red tomatoes
2 red beets
1 ear garlic
1 bag mexican sour gherkins

Ok.  Before you scroll down and see the picture – Bonus points if you know what mexican sour gherkins are.  I was really excited when I saw these.  They look like mini watermelons (for reals, cutest thing ever) and taste like cucumbers.  Go figure.  When I first was introduced to them last year, I literally entered “mini watermelons that taste like cucumbers” into Google to figure out what they’re called.  They are super crispy and taste great in a salad, so that’s my plan for them.  Although they are supposed to pickle really well too.

My original plan still holds with the carrots.

The corn will probably go into a salad or fried rice (I think I’m getting tired of the corn and hamburger summer combo).

I am excited to make a caprese salad and salsa using the tomatoes.  And I’m looking forward to adding another very fresh ingredient to that salsa – the garlic.

I am not so sure about the beets yet, I’ll definitely be looking for some inspiration.

The cabbage!  J and I eat fish tacos like nobody’s business. It’s another mexican dish I had to perfect quickly.  In recent weeks, the fish tacos have taken a back seat to the loaded nachos.  So, the cabbage is a great reason to get back to fish taco-ing.  Although I’ll be looking for other ways to use the cabbage.  I saw online that you can put cabbage “Steaks” in the oven for a bit, with salt and pepper and it comes out great, so maybe I’ll do something simple like that.

As for last week, for the “bad” – the purple potatoes and squash are still awaiting cooking – I am set on making a gratin with them this week.  The carrots got spongy and I threw them out unfortunately.  The tomatoes were so tasty and are so versatile.  I think some went into a panini with avocado and cheese and some into a refreshing salad.  And the kale.  Definitely another success.  I sauted the kale and then made pesto and kale stuffed chicken breasts.  Came out great!

csa wk11 cali

Veggie on
– shirley

csa roundup: week 10

csa wk10
Happy happy weekend!  When I saw the list for this week’s share contents, I got sooo excited. TOMATOES!!  I’ve been patiently awaiting the tomatoes.  I love the taste of local, organic tomatoes.  Plus they are soo plentiful this time, that it will continue to make its appearance in the basket.  I am excited to use some of this surplus to make tomato sauce.  Just like the pesto, I’ll be freezing the sauce and using it during the fall and winter.

This week, the share included,

1 bunch purple potatoes
1 bag orange carrots
1 bunch green kale
1 bag red tomatoes
3 yellow pattypan squash

I am thinking of using the tomatoes in a very fresh and summer-y way.  Maybe in a caprese salad.  I’d like to really get to enjoy the fresh flavor of the tomatoes and that might work out well.  With any leftover, I’m thinking that I’ll make salsa.

My mom used to make a sweet caramelized carrot side dish that I am going to try to replicate with the carrots.

Not sure about the squash, although I’m torn between doing the stuffed squash since they were such a hit and just trying something new altogether.

I’ve never used purple potatoes, so I am excited about those as well.  I think they would look so pretty in a gratin.

And the kale….oh kale.  The one part of the basket I could do without.  We’ll see about that guy.

And a quick check on last week….

The basil went into another batch of pesto.

The cauliflower and the chard went into a completely new experiment.  It was flipping amazing.  A few months ago I saw on interest pure-ing cauliflower into an Alfredo sauce.  It worked.  I was actually surprised at how well it came out.  It was basically cooked cauliflower, with a tablespoon of butter.  It did thicken up a little too much, so next time I’ll probably add a tad of chicken stock.  I sautéed the chard with some bacon and added to the sauce, and we had it over some pasta.  Definitely a new way to use these veggies and it was a success.

The cucumbers went into the giant weekly salad.

And we ate the corn along side  pesto grilled chicken sandwiches.  It was a perfect summer dinner.

– Veggie on,
shirley

CSA roundup: week 9

csa wk9

I can definitely tell that I’ve gotten used to making the most with my share each week.  It was another week where using the share’s contents in meals came naturally to me (with a little inspiration from Pinterest of course).

The cucumbers (both regular and half the whites) went into a salad.  The other half of the whites are pickling in the fridge – after the success of the regular cucumbers becoming pickles, I’m excited to try these in a couple days.

The red onions got used all week when prepping dinner.

I made some great pesto with the basil, and used the pesto to make a chicken pesto cream sauce for some spaghetti squash we had on hand.  Recipe is coming!

The fennel was one of the ingredients I used when I made stuffed pattypan squash (with chicken and bok choy).  Recipe is also coming and I couldn’t believe how good this came out.

And lastly, most of the zucchini and potatoes went into a gratin.  It was a great side dish to the stuffed squash.  I’ll share my gratin recipe soon, since I loved how creamy it was (without a ton of butter and no cream!)

This week, my coworker picked up the share this week.  So this is what he handed over to me:

1 cucumber
1 bunch swiss chard
1 bunch basil
3 ears corn
1 head cauliflower

J loves cauliflower latkes, so I’ll be sure to make those.

The cucumber is huge and will be added to a salad.

The corn will probably get steamed and become a side to a fun bbq dinner this week, with leftovers ending up in the salad.

The chard will probably be sauted and used in place of spinach or another green.

And, I’m planning on making another batch of pesto and freezing it for when vegetables and herbs aren’t so plentyful in a few months.

Definitely a simple week for these veggies, but I’ll be welcoming (and searching) for some inspirations to take some of these vegetables up a notch.