veggie CSA, no. 4, 2011

Did you know that beets are actually the same species as Swiss Chard? Swiss chard is bred to have big colorful leaves, while beets are bred to have big juicy roots, but you can absolutely eat the root of a chard plant, or the greens of a beet. We at the farm almost never eat chard, just because beet greens are more plentiful and virtually indistinguishable from chard once cooked. For now, we’ll be bunching beets with their tops on, so that each bunch is basically like getting two items in one. For more info and recipes, see our Veggipedia entries on Beets and Chard

Also, we’re giving out green garlic this week to full shares. Garlic plants, as you know from last week’s share, are completely edible. The green garlic plants we’ll give out are not yet fully mature, but you can cut up and mince the stalks and leaves and use any way you’d normally use garlic.

For herbs this week, we are going to roll out lots of mint, since it is kicking butt this year and the rest of the herbs have been struggling to keep up with our harvest schedule. There are lots of fun things to do with mint. You can use them in some cooking dishes, but it also goes good in many cocktails (mojitos, mint julep), or make mint tea, or for the adventurous bake it into chocolate brownies or fudge. See our veggipedia’s Mint page for lots of ideas.

This is our best guess of what will come in the Stone Soup shares this week.

Please remember that sometimes we can’t harvest exactly what we expect!
Lettuce (SE and I split this)
Beets (also split)
Herbs (we only got a bunch of mint… which SE gave to me)
Other bunched item (turned out to be baby turnips again… I told SE to keep them and give them a try)

Oh yay… more mint. NOT! Too much mint in my fridge!

I chopped it finally with some parsley and basil from the garden, used it to top of chickpeas, threw in some extra virgin olive oil and rice vinegar, and finely diced some sweet peppers.

The tops of the beets were separated and quickly wilted in duck broth, and served with udon noodles in a bowl.  I liked the flavor of the beet greens.  But it made my mouth feel really dry, the same way that spinach affects me but to a lesser degree.  The only downside of serving the beet greens in the duck broth was that the flavor of my duck broth became blander (the color was pretty – a little pinkish!).

I should remember to cook my beets.  But now it’s hot so I don’t feel like cooking.  I wonder what will show up in the CSA tomorrow.

The lettuce was so sweet that I was pretty happy to eat it straight.  I also ate some with my chickpea salad.

veggie CSA, no. 3, 2011

(haha, another entry that I’m posting later than I had originally intended.  CSA #4 is tomorrow… I wonder what it will be!)

“Things are still pretty green at the farm. Until the cukes and zucchini start yielding the shares tend to be pretty light and leafy. But lots of goodies on the way: tomatoes and sweet corn are growing steadily, onion are growing up fast, melons are on the way, and sugar snap peas are just around the corner now. This week we’ll be rolling out garlic scapes, the twisty goofy looking flower heads of the garlic plant. 100% of the garlic plant is edible, including the scapes, which need to come off the plant this time of year anyways. If you leave the flower on the plant, it devotes a lot of its energy to seed, which means less for the bulb. By taking off the flower, we redirect the plants’ energy towards growing a big fat bulb at the base, which is what we prefer. Scapes are actually super versatile, taste exactly the same as garlic cloves, but less intense. Use them any way you would normally use garlic. You can also make some bangin’ green pesto with them, or just hit them with olive oil and salt and roast them in the oven like you would asparagus. They mellow out upon roasting and are super tasty just eaten whole.

This is our best guess of what will come in the Stone Soup shares this week.

Please remember that sometimes we can’t harvest exactly what we expect!

Lettuce (head) 1
Garlic Scapes (lb) 0.25
Herbs (bunch) 1
Arugula (bunch) 1”

SE decided to only keep the lettuce. She let me keep the herbs (purple basil), arugula, and garlic scapes. Ok, I called dibs on the garlic scapes, but I would have thought that she wanted the arugula.

Poor arugula, it has been insect-chomped to kingdom come.

So, what did I do with this week’s CSA so far? I decided to take the garlic scapes (I had about 3.3 oz in reality), the basil (about 1 oz.), two handfuls of pine nuts, a pinch of salt, extra virgin olive oil (1/3 c. + 1/4 c.) and squeeze of half a lemon to my blender. Garlic scape pesto! I think I used just a tad too much oil and pine nuts, but that’s ok.

The true taste test?  I took the garlic scape pesto to pasta.  It was very green tasting.  Not in a bad way, but I realize now that I should have added cheese.  Plus, I’m such a basil pesto fan that I found myself wanting to add more basil to my garlic scape pesto.

I have a whole jar of this pesto, so I’ll be trying to think up of other applications.  I think the next one might be pizza.  (^_^)

veggie CSA, no. 2, 2011

What we got yesterday:
small white turnips
napa cabbage
red lettuce
popcorn on the cob
a purple kohlrabi
eggs

I took the popcorn, kohlrabi, and turnips.  My sister took the napa cabbage and red lettuce.  We split the eggs again.  I’m not even done eating last week’s eggs but that’s because I had to use up the store bought eggs that were already in the fridge.

I haven’t decided what I’ll do with the turnips and the kohlrabi yet.  Most likely, I’ll roast the turnips and stir-fry the greens.