Week 7: red kale, 2 heads baby romanesco cauliflower, 2 cucumbers, new red potatoes.
I did a lot of swapping out with week 7's half share from Lancaster Farm Fresh, because 1) I was alone that week, and 2) I was going out of town for vacation only a couple of days after picking up the share. My main mission was to swap out veggies that go bad quickly for veggies that would still be in good shape when I returned home. Lettuce, cilantro (of course, I've been waiting for cilantro to show up, and now I have to swap it!), and onions (still had some) were swapped for new red potatoes, an extra romanesco cauliflower, and an extra cucumber.
Kale is the most perishable of the bunch (although, freshly picked vegetables that you get in CSAs really do last longer, and the kale would have been fine a week later), so I tackled it by making a big bowl of raw kale salad simply dressed with vinegar, oil, and salt. Since I was by myself, I chowed on the kale salad for three consecutive meals. I never tire of leftovers.
Most colorful would be the pita covered with kale salad, CSA cucumbers, cubes of this soy and seitan roast I make, and Peppadew peppers from Claudio's in the Italian Market. Any one know were to get Peppadew peppers cheaply? I love these sweet and spicy peppers (so good stuffed with cheese), but they cost an arm and a leg — $12 and change per pound at Claudio's. Most monochromatic would be the bowl of kale salad with CSA cucumbers, and CSA pea shoots left over from the previous week's CSA. This was a clean-out-the-fridge dish. Back from my vacation a week later and a bit off my eating and sleeping schedule from zooming through time zones, I opted for for a midnight snack of cucumbers drizzled with rice vinegar, topped with Feta and fresh garden basil.
A more impressive use of cucumbers would be the chilled cucumber soup the boy made, but he made the soup with a combination of store bought cucumbers and cucumbers we grew on our patio. We can really blow through some cucumbers around here. I'm not a big potato eater (rice is my preferred carb), but I do love some potato salad! Any cold summer salad that is bound together by mayonnaise makes me do a happy dance. I never seem to make potato salad the same twice. This one had onions from the previous week's CSA, garlic chives from our garden, and my homemade artichoke relish all swirled into a mayo (Duke's only!) and vinegar dressing.Romanesco cauliflower tastes more like broccoli than cauliflower to me, so if you hate cauliflower you might want to give it a go. The romanesco was simply steamed and eaten with leftover potato salad and leftover grilled squash and zucchini.
I can't stand eating hot foods in the summer. When you don't have AC and you work outside in the heat all day, a piping hot lasagne or ratatouille from the oven is not what you want, even if it does make good use of summer vegetables. When food has to be cooked or heated, I stick my plate in the freezer for a bit, which is what I did when the romanesco was done steaming. Refrigerated leftovers, raw vegetables, cool summer salads and I get along very well.
Week 8: green cabbage, onions, kale, garlic, green beans, fennel leaf, beets, and new red potatoes.
Wow, this looks like one of the most varied CSA shares yet this year! I was out of town, so offered up my share to Rachel of Miss Rachel's Pantry. Perhaps some of the local produce made it into one of the lovely vegan meals or lunches Miss Rachel provides.
How did you use your CSA or farmers' market haul?