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Colleen's CSA Corner Week 1

Posted 6/23/2020 6:42am by Colleen Quiram.

Welcome to our CSA program! I am excited to share recipes and meal ideas with you and get to know many of you through email over the next 17 weeks. I hope to help you use your CSA share each week by sharing my family’s meal plan and what we will be doing with our Family share. I’ll be honest, I am not a fancy cook, and oftentimes I will eat all of the grape tomatoes before they ever make it home for use in a recipe! You will not often find recipes that involve a lot of prep, work, or time here. Instead, I will provide you with dinners that my 13 year old son and husband will eat, that can be made after a busy work day, or ways to freeze and preserve what we receive to use this winter.  

With that being said, here is my plan for each item this week:

Broccoli – This is first on the list in a Beef & Broccoli Stir Fry recipe Tuesday night. I prefer my broccoli crisp and not soggy, so I often cook it quick in a wide skillet so any liquid can steam out. Thinly sliced flank steak, sautéed with garlic, ginger, toasted sesame oil, and then add in the broccoli trimmed and rinsed. Continue to mix and sauté until broccoli is cooked to your liking, add some soy sauce (I prefer lite Tamari sauce) and sesame seeds, serve with brown rice.

Cucumber, Romaine & Bibb Lettuce – First, let me explain that I had no idea how much flavor lettuce could have until I had fresh cut, home grown lettuce! I don’t want to cover this light, flavorful, crisp lettuce with a bunch of dressing and toppings. Instead, I will use it in fresh salads with dinner, topped with the sliced cucumber and a light balsamic vinegar dressing. I think we will have salad Wednesday with grilled salmon, and again on Friday with some grilled sandwiches.

Radishes – Not a household favorite to eat raw, but my husband plans to make this Radish Pickles recipe Tuesday night so that we can enjoy on burgers later this month.

Garlic Scapes – If you are not familiar with the flavor of garlic scapes you are in for a treat! These are the seeds of bulb-garlic growing in our fields. Similar to how chives send our flowers and re-seed, garlic will do the same thing. Once we cut the garlic scape off the bulb, the garlic begins to send more energy into forming a nice, large garlic bulb instead of a seed. Dice up the entire stem and use in stir-fry, tuna salads, or even make pesto. I will use it with my zucchini below.

Zucchini – Three zucchini will make about two meals for my family. Thursday - Sliced into ½ inch discs, heat a pan on the stove and melt butter in the pan, add the zucchini in a single layer, sprinkle with garlic powder, kosher salt, and black pepper. Flip them over once they brown on the bottom a bit, add more garlic powder and the garlic scapes. Once the second side browns, they’re done! Higher heat will help them crisp up rather than get soggy. We will have the rest on the grill Saturday, again sliced into ½ inch thick discs, and brushed with a sweet Thai Chile sauce.

Strawberries – Let’s be real, IF these make it home, they won’t make it past the 13yr old boy. I likely won’t have a chance to make any fun recipes. But, if there are a few left, I will mash them up to mix with my Greek yogurts for breakfast. Don’t be afraid to use them even if they look a little darker than store bought! They can be rinsed and frozen for use in smoothies, yogurts, or as ice cream toppings later.

Cauliflower – This should keep until Sunday evening in the crisper. Cut the head of cauliflower into bite sized pieces, also cut a sweet potato into ½” cubes. Melt ½ Tbsp butter in a bowl, add ½ Tbsp olive oil, garlic powder, kosher salt and black pepper. Toss both the cauliflower and sweet potato in the butter mixture, pour onto a shallow baking sheet and roast at 350⁰ for 35min or until slightly browned on the edges. If your cauliflower softens a bit before you are ready to use it, cut the main stem off and place in a bowl of icy cold water, just enough to cover the stem. It should firm up quickly.

Herbs – Basil and Cilantro – I will plant both of these for use later this summer. Cilantro tends to bolt as the weather warms, keep it cool in only a half day of sun and use the leaves as you need to. Basil will provide all season long if you pinch the growing tips back as you use the leaves. Don’t just pull the leaves off the side of the plant.

I hope these ideas help you to us your entire box this week. Please comment and share with us via email or on Facebook what you are doing with your share!