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CSA Box Week 10: Tips, Tricks and Ideas

Posted 8/22/2017 3:30am by Jenna Untiedt.

Well, the State Fair starts this week which signals a change of season soon. The request for fall pricing sheets have begun and the talk of pumpkins and squash is now a daily occurrence. While everything else is pushing forwards, i just want to grab onto these last few weeks of summer and enjoy every last minute of them. Don't get be wrong, I absolutely love fall and everything it has to offer, but I am not ready for it quite yet. Let's get out and enjoy the last few weeks on the water, in the pool, and rooftop happy hours. Summer is too short not take full advantage of everything you can, and that includes the locally grown produce as well. 

I'll be real honest with you all, I have not been home much at all lately. 2017 has been the year of weddings for me so with everything that goes along with weddings, my weekends have been a bit busy, and many of them spent away from home. That makes it a little hard to get through the box, but I still have managed to make the most of it while I am at home. Here are some great tips to help you get the most out of your share if you are at a loss of what to do. 

Let's break down the share this week:

Sweet Corn: If you are going to keep it for a few days, please make sure it is stored in the refrigerator in a plastic bag to keep it as fresh as possible. Sweet corn is truly a summer food, so enjoy corn on the cob whenever you can. Add it as a side to any meal, or make it your meal. If you can't get it it, just cook it, cut it off the cob and toss into a freezer bag. You can add it to any soup this winter. 

Heirloom Tomatoes: These are a soft tomato, so please use them as quickly as possible. I have been adding slices of heirloom tomato to salads. They add so much flavor, enjoy them. 

Grape Tomatoes: These have become a staple snack item. They are great to snack on while making dinner or for long drives. Keep them on the counter though, not in the fridge. Not in love with them plain? Just add a bit of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, fresh basil, and mozzarella cheese to make an easy salad.

Slicing Tomatoes: Sandwiches, salads, or pasta toppers. Pasta toppers you ask? Just dice, even mix with grape or heirloom tomatoes, add a dash of salt and pepper and top your warm pasta with fresh tomatoes. It is a great way to switch up a quick and easy dinner.

Watermelon: I made a simple salad last night with fresh mint and diced watermelon. It was refreshing and enjoyable. It doesn't get much easier.

Apples: Zestar! apples are here. I could tell you to make apple crisp or an apple pie, but that might be jumping the gun for fall. Enjoy these for an afternoon snack. They taste incredibly different than any apple you find in the store right now. My favorite afternoon snack is an apple with a dash of peanut butter....try it out.

Beets: I absolutely LOVE roasted beets. I like to roast mine individually wrapped in tinfoil with a bit of olive oil. Wrapping them individually in tin foil allows you to easily peel the skins off once cooked and cooled. I like to roast them all at once, dice, and add to salads throughout the week. They are great with some goat or feta cheese.

Potatoes: Potato salad, fried potatoes, mashed potatoes, fries....the possibilities are endless. Personally, I like to make smashed potatoes. I like to dice into smaller pieces, boil, then smash on a cookie sheet with a bit of olive oil then bake at about 425 for 10 minutes or so until they are crispy. They make a great side dish!

Zucchini: These were the topic at the dinner table last night. There is something about fresh and local zucchini that just inhibits our ability to but it in the store during the winter. I used to think zucchini was a boring vegetable, but it tastes so good! I roasted the zucchini last night and added it to a beet salad. It was delicious. If eating it plain isnt your thing, zucchini bread is always a great backup plan.

Green Peppers: Add the peppers to your eggs, top your salad, add to a sandwich or stir fry...these have absolutely great flavor.

There you have it, week number 10. Creativity can get a bit tough right now as you are busy soaking in the last few weeks of summer, but don't let your share go to waste. Take a few minutes to prep some of the food and freeze it if you know you can't get to it in a timely manner. You will definitely thank yourself later. 

Last but not least, I want to mention an event we will be featured in at the MN State Fair. On Sunday, August 26th, we will be joining MN Farmers Union in Dan Patch Park for their Minnesota Cooks Series. We partnered with 6Smith to feature produce from our farm for a recipe. Stop by around 3pm to see Chef Angel Luna from 6Smith and Paul Nelson from Untiedt's.