CSA Spectacular: Beets, Bouquets, & Beans

Achievement: #26. Join a CSA

Time for today’s second dose of CSA-goodness!

CSA Weeks 6 & 7
This time, we *did* remember to take the CSA box photo. In the box for Week 7 were: more blueberries from Dawson’s Orchards, romaine lettuce from Sunny Meadow Farm, PEACHES! from Kistaco Farm, a bag of beans, zucchini (both of those items may have come from a number of different farms, so I can’t accurately credit them), onions and kohlrabi from Blue Goose Farm, and kale from Clarion River Organics.

CSA Weeks 6 & 7
Week 7 was also a flower week for us, so we got this beautiful bouquet from Goose Creek Gardens!

CSA Weeks 6 & 7
I still had beets left over from Week 6, so I put them to work as a dinner side in a potato hash dish. However, I was more than a little surprised when I started slicing them open and saw candy-cane-like swirls.

CSA Weeks 6 & 7
It turns out, these are a type of beet called chioggia beets. The flavor is similar to your standard dark purple beet, but I like the look of the rings of color.

CSA Weeks 6 & 7
What says ‘Christmas in July’ more than some candy cane beets, right?

CSA Weeks 6 & 7
I put these beets into this recipe for Red Flannel Hash. The recipe also uses sweet potato, red potato, onions, and bacon, and although I served it for dinner alongside salmon, it would also be a great breakfast home fry dish.

CSA Weeks 6 & 7
Next up, I wanted to find a good home for the blueberries and peaches I’d just gotten, as well as the last of the cherries I had left over from my cherry tart. The solution? Sensuous phyllo fruit tartlets.

CSA Weeks 6 & 7
You can top these tarts with any sort of fruit that you like. They were quick and easy to make, and the cream filling is just amazing (Neufchatel, vanilla yogurt, and Grand Marnier make up the bulk of the recipe). I would caution that the phyllo dough cooks up super fast, and although we cooked it to the short end of the recommendation (7-10 minutes), it was actually a minute or so too long.

I made the tarts individually as we were eating them, storing the cream filling and fruit in separate containers in the fridge, and that allowed us to enjoy them over several days without the phyllo dough getting soggy.

CSA Weeks 6 & 7
And then came one of the trickiest items to cook: all this cabbage!

Thankfully, the latest issue of Cooking Light was out, and guess what? There were recipes for basically everything we got in our CSA box, including all that cabbage!

CSA Weeks 6 & 7
I made the Cooking Light Mardi Gras Slaw recipe, with a few adjustments. First, since I had a ton of red cabbage, I altered the ratio a little to be 2 cups of red cabbage slices and 3 cups of green. After the incident with the cider vinegar in the greens, I swapped it out for red wine vinegar. And finally, I added Granny Smith apple matchsticks (1 full apple’s worth) into the blend. I have to say, this was the most AMAZING coleslaw I’ve ever had!! It’s fresh and tart and creamy and crunchy all at once, without being heavy in any way.

CSA Weeks 6 & 7
From that same issue (and same article, actually), I found a great home for the bag of beans. We received a mixture of wax and green beans, as well as a bit of edamame, and they were just the right fit for this summer bean salad recipe. It calls for fava beans, but edamame is a suitable replacement, if that’s what you’ve got. Just note: a lot of edamame goes a little way. I know I wound up using way less than the recipe called for, but it was all we had.

CSA Weeks 6 & 7
We served up the bean salad with the coleslaw alongside a steak from the grill, and it was like a summertime picnic barbecue in our dining room!

I’m loving that our CSA is surprising us every week, and that we’re getting to be more adventurous with our cooking (I would NEVER have sought out a coleslaw recipe if I hadn’t wound up with a ton of cabbage). Tomorrow, I’ll be making the kohlrabi as well as a brand new zucchini recipe, so check back to see the results!

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Filed under #26, #26-13, buy fresh buy local, cooking, cooking light, CSA, dessert, dinner, side dishes, summer

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