Okay, y’all, I feel like I’m drowning in a backlog of to-be-written posts, so I’m gonna take a mulligan and do three weeks of CSA goodness all at once. Do you mind? I hope not. If you do, tough.
Let’s start with Week 9:
Look at all that pretty stuff! I think those might have been our first CSA potatoes, and they were tasty! Once we figured out that the knobby stuff with the frilly green tops was celeriac, we made a nice potato chowder. We also added the scallions and some of the corn hiding back there underneath everything, but you’ll just have to take my word on that because I didn’t take any pictures. Plus, it was potato chowder. Not the most photogenic dish.
We had a salsa-fest that week too, courtesy of 30-Minute Vegan: the tomatoes went into one kind of salsa, and the tomatillos went into another kind that was more like a dressing. Holy shit, tomatillos are bitter. I’d only ever used them in the Manzana Chili Verde from Veganomicon, which, incidentally, you should absolutely make. Anyway, that was not bitter, but then again the main ingredient was not tomatillos. Tomatillos by themselves are hella bitter and you have been warned. The jury’s still out on whether that sauce was good; we’ve still got some in the fridge and are planning to make fajitas (or something like them) this week, so we’ll see.
Here’s the tomato salsa and the lettuce, hanging out on a spelt tortilla (blergh, clearly I’m not hippie enough for spelt) with some burger crumbles:
Ah, the cucumbers. Poor, ill-fated cukes. Long story short, Red tried to make quick pickles, and we had the wrong kind of vinegar, so the resulting product was nigh inedible. Live and learn: pickling is not for the weak.
Here’s the other picture I managed to take that week:
What you see there is a cabbage-beet slaw with pineapple-mint dressing, hacked from a Veganomicon recipe that called for parsnips or some other out-of-season vegetable. Red loved it, because he loves all things beet and cabbage, so slaw is pretty much his happy place. I’m less of a slaw person, but it was good. The corn was super—nothing like sweet, local summer corn. And the BBQ tofu was a rousing success. I think it was the best I’ve ever made. Instead of smothering the tofu with the BBQ sauce and baking it, I sautéed it to get it crispy before simmering it with the sauce. EPIC WIN.
Whee, more potatoes! And some weird green leafage that turned out to be sweet potato leaves! Who even knew you could eat such a thing? As it turns out, they roll up and slice like a dream, and don’t really taste like much, so we chopped them up and made Green Mashed Potatoes.
Um, there was some sad-ass lettuce that practically begged for the compost bin. I’m sorry, I try not to pitch stuff straight off like that, but it was a mercy composting.
We’ve been playing around with 30-Minute Vegan’s recipe for spaghetti sauce, so that’s where the tomatoes went. It made about a jar and a half (totally unscientific, as we used random jars that used to hold other things, possibly spaghetti sauce). Red chopped up all that delicious-smelling basil, and we used half for the sauce and froze the rest.
Those baby tomatoes (cherry? grape? is there a difference?) were probably the most delicious tomatoes I’ve ever had. Usually I find raw tomatoes too acidic, but these were perfectly sweet. Along with the scallions, some corn, and a few non-CSA goodies, they helped make my favorite black-bean pasta salad. I always double the avocado in that recipe, because avocadoes = love.
The squash hung out in the fridge until the next week’s pickup, so keep reading!
More tomatoes! More squash! More sweet potato leaves! Ah, that’s late summer for you. Since we had two weeks of squash hanging out in the fridge drawer, Red diced them all and we roasted them with olive oil and Italian seasoning. That’s become my default for summer squash, and it works quite well. It’s good with rice or good all by itself.
Those beautiful Roma tomatoes made more spaghetti sauce, only this batch was better. It must have been the tomatoes, because I didn’t do anything differently (except not bother measuring the agave nectar or the undrinkable, cheap-ass wine I added for that extra somethin’-somethin’). Anyway, we combined the sauce with the half-jar of sauce from the previous week, and made eggplant lasagna with that big mofo you see in the picture there. I took another picture that showed the eggplant’s size better, but it totally obscured the green beans and thyme! It was work slicing and salting that thing, I tell you, but it was easier with two of us. We typically go with Veganomicon’s lasagna recipe, and the tofu ricotta is so good. That’s where the rest of the basil went. Mmmm, fresh basil. We need a bigger lasagna pan, though.
Red diced up the cantaloupe (he is the best person to chop things, I swear) and we ate it. No secret recipe there.
That left us with motley crew of green beans, scallions, Japanese eggplant, and sweet potato leaves. After about 10 seconds of pondering, we came to one conclusion: stir fry! We used a bit of store-bought hoisin sauce and Korean BBQ sauce, tamari, and Dijon mustard. Stay with me here, because we discovered that mustard is the shizz in stir fry sauces. You probably already knew that, but we didn’t, so we basked in our discovery. With a handful of cashews, it made a delicious stir fry.
Also, I have just stared at the phrase “stir fry” for several minutes, and it doesn’t look like it should be actual words. Try it.
Maybe I can actually do this week’s CSA review on time! Stay tuned, and happy nomming.