Saturday, March 3, 2007

What's in the Box?

From the Two Small Farms March newsletter:

What's coming up in the first few weeks of your CSA Box?

From High Ground: Radishes, Salad, Spinach (?), cilantro, and in
April: great Strawberries!

From Mariquita Farm: 3 colors of Carrots, Fennel, Leeks, Collard
Greens, 2-3 colors of Beets, Gold Chard, Spigarello (Italian cooking green),
Rapini, Gold Turnips, Green Garlic

So, as a shareholder/box recipient, what am I thinking? How do I process this information and get ready to receive and make use of the food? The following list happens fast -- mere seconds -- but gives you an idea of what goes through my mind each week when I receive the list of food.
  1. What is all this stuff? The first thing I did was scan the list and decide if I knew each of the items. Spigarello and gold turnips were definitely new ... not sure if we've had rapini, but I know I've heard of it.

  2. Do we like this stuff? As recognition takes place, or not, I'm also considering our appreciation for the item.
    Love: Strawberries, beets, and green garlic.

    Like: Spinach, carrots, fennel, leeks, collard greens, and chard.

    Not Sure: Spigarello, rapini

    Ambivalent: Radishes, lettuce, cilantro.

    Don't Like: none!
  3. What is it? If I don't know a fruit or vegetable, I look it up. Rapini, it turns out, is another name for broccoli rabe -- we've had it, we like it. Spigarello is also related to broccoli, only leafier and more concentrated. Sounds similar to rapini. Add both to the 'like' category.

  4. What are we going to do with it? Initial ideas include:
    • Strawberries - eat as is or clean and freeze for smoothies.
    • Beets - roast, toss with vinegar and salt.
    • Green Garlic - risotto!
    • Spinach - toss in with virtually anything that needs an extra dose of veggies.
    • Carrots - eat as is.
    • Fennel - fennel veloute (roux based "creamy" soup).
    • Leeks - add to fennel soup.
    • Collard Greens - braise.
    • Chard - braise or toss in with anything that needs an extra dose of veggies.
    • Spigarello - saute.
    • Rapini - saute with brown butter and balsamic vinegar.
    • Radishes - no idea yet...
    • Lettuce - salad if we have to...
    • Cilantro - cilantro chutney to freeze for future use.

1 comment:

  1. I just subscribed to your feed. I have been providing recipes to coordinate with the harvest at my csa where it all started, in the Hudson Valley. 20 minutes from the Berkshires, I joined 10 years ago and didn't know what to do with (what IS it?) things like kohlrabi, celeriac, or mustard greens. So in solving my problem, I found a new calling. The members love it, and I have been adapting Julia's recipes from their e-letter for mnay years too. Good luck and keep cooking & writing about it.