CSA Box One

CSA Box One

It is CSA time! Every other Tuesday we get a box of vegetables from our local farm. Yesterday we picked up our fourth box of the season and first box of the blog. This one was heavy. You’ll see why in a minute.

This week’s box included:

(All of the weights are estimates. I really need a kitchen scale for this box!)

4 small eggplants

I have a confession: I never cook with eggplants. Ever. Eggplants are one of those things that I just don’t gravitate towards. I’ll eat them if they are hidden under tomatoes and other things but chose to cook with them? Not so much. So this weekend, we are conquering eggplant. I think this is the ‘brave’ part of ‘the brave radish.’

 2 lbs Yukon potatoes
Corn and black bean salsa
Corn and black bean salsa at the picnic.
6 ears of corn

The hard part of the corn is there is much of it. We are two people. We can’t just eat corn on the cob every night. I think we’ll put some on pizza.

I made a black bean and corn salsa for a picnic. I usually just throw things in the bowl until the ratios look right but this Paula Deen recipe is pretty close to what I did. I used the juice of two limes, no vinegar, and add half a jalapeño.

5 large beets, easily 4-5 lbs total

Beets are hard. We got some in the last box and I made the most delicious roasted beet dip from Jerusalem cookbook by Ottolenghi & Tamimi last time. But roasting beets for an hour in an apartment without central air in Chicago in the summer is it’s own kind of painful. I need an alternative. Or a cold front!

One idea I have is beet chips. I love store bought beet chips so why not make them myself?

I have found lots of beet slaw and beet salad recipes but then what do you pair those with? I’m not much for the TV dinner style chicken plus two sides meal. Any ideas for a main dish that uses beets??

tiny zucchinis

They are so small! And a few even still have their blossoms on. I think these are screaming to top a pizza.

1-2 lbs of Pristine apples

These apples are very small and green. I googlged them and they sound tart. I think they’ll be great for baking or cooking. Will has been looking for a fruit compote for his morning yogurt so maybe we’ll use them for this. But also, I love baked apple desserts…

green beans

I love green beans, these will be easy!

quart of cherry tomatoes
4 green peppers

We used some of these in a soba noodle stir-fry the first night.

2 large white onions
small head of cauliflower

This isn’t enough cauliflower for Smitten Kitchen’s cauliflower quesadillas but I might have to buy more just to make them. These quesadillas are one of my favorite things right now.

HUGE Napa cabbage

Like larger than my head big. Easily 3 lbs? More? I have no idea what to do with all of this cabbage, especially not of the napa variety. We put some in a soba noodle stir -fry the first night but that only used four leaves. I think there will be more stir-fry in our future. And Asian fish tacos. Do I dare try to make kimchi? I’m not sure I even like kimchi but Will does.

We made a rift on the Spicy Stir Fried Cabbage recipe from the NY Times, link below, with onions, a zucchini from the fridge, two of the green peppers, cabbage, chicken, and soba noodles our first night. It was pretty good! We basically just did a regular stir fry and used the sauce from NY Times.

Cabbage noodle stir fry
Rift off of NY Times spicy cabbage stir fry: onions, green peppers, cabbage, zucchini, and chicken.

Here are some links to recipes using the CSA ingredients that inspire me:

Spicy Zucchini Frittata from Tracy Shutterbean

http://www.shutterbean.com/2012/spicy-zucchini-fritatta/

Beet dip with Middle Eastern flavors from Ottolenghi

http://www.ottolenghi.co.uk/pureed-beetroot-with-yoghurt-za-atar-shop

Italian Style Eggplant Parmesan from Serious Eats

http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/2014/08/italian-style-eggplant-parmesan-melanzane-alla-parmigiana-recipe.html

Spicy Stir Fried Cabbage from NY Times

https://cooking.nytimes.com/recipes/1013335-spicy-stir-fried-cabbage

Charred Cauliflower Quesadillas from Smitten Kitchen

https://smittenkitchen.com/2015/02/charred-cauliflower-quesadillas/ 

Let me know what you would do with all of these veggies in the comments! Especially beets and cabbage….

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