Tuesday, August 3, 2010

More effective ways of preseving the wonderful produce

Sometimes in the past the bounty of delicious goods we have gotten from Driftless Organics has been over whelming, and has gone from the box it arrived in straight into the refrigerator. At time I must admit, delicious items were pushed to the back of a low shelf or crisper and not properly taken care of which resulted in heartbreaking spoilage.

My partner JSP and I decided that we were putting a stop to this and have made it our new practice to process each box as it arrives in our home, taking about 20 minutes of time and utilizing reusable resealable Ziploc bags, as well as Tupperware when appropriate. These measures in combination with more prominent placement of these delectable wholesome goodies on top shelves have greatly increased the amount of munching we do on these vegetable. This in turn has resulted in far less heartbreaking produce spoilage.

I recommend taking the time to treat CSA food with the diligence and respect that such well tended food deserves. It may even make you happier.

P.S. My partner and I just ate three cobs of last week's CSA sweet corn and it was DEVINE.


Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Just the three of us

Last week we shared our CSA box, minus Patrick who was away on a retreat. The box as usual was full of tasty goodies as you can see below. Morgon Mae brought over some garbanzo beans and we sauted some garlic and wilted the arugula in with the beans for a protein main course. There were six ears of sweet corn that we cooked, and were very buttery sweet. The cherry tomatoes were an orange variety and we popped them in our mouths greedily. We enjoyed some raw beans from our garden too. The small bag of edamame (soy beans) we got in the CSA box was put into boiling water for a few minutes and just a touch of salt was added to them when served.


Sunday, August 9, 2009

The Manchurian Candidate (for best use of cauliflower)

We made this Manchurian-Style Cauliflower the other night from our Driftless cauliflower, and it was really delicious. We used the roasted variation for the sake of time/mess, but deep fried would probably win out. The whole recipe is in the preview for Mark Bittman's "How to Cook Everything Vegetarian" cookbook at Google books, so there is no reason to not try it out.

Plus the book rules, so you should really just buy it when you are done stuffing your face with the cauliflower.



After eight long days of waiting, I pulled out the Drifltless pickling cucumbers from the crock today. This is the first cucumber pickling run for my new crock, and I was curious to see how they would turn out.

Delicious is how I would say they turned out. I put in mustard seed, black peppercorns, bay leaves, dried red pepper, cloves, cinnamon stick, and some fresh dill from the back yard. I totally winged the spice amounts, and went a little heavy on the cloves, but all around a good flavor.


Sunday, July 26, 2009

The fruits of box seven (and our labors)

While I don't have a picture of box seven, here are some photos of our creations.

For dinner on Friday I made a grilled dill potato salad. I grilled some Driftless potatoes (plus some extra ones we had lying around, which might have also been Driftless), and then mixed them with the CSA dill and a mustard, olive oil and red wine vinegar dressing. I let it cool for a while before serving.

We also made roasted brassica with last week's red cabbage, and a salad with the Driftless carrots, sunflower oil, and some lettuce from our own garden.

Saturday's CSA inspired dinner was mainly Sichuan in style. Out of the great Land of Plenty cookbook, we made Sichuan fried green beans and a Sichuan cucumber salad. They both heavily featured dried chili peppers and Sichuan peppercorns. Along with those two dishes, we made some yellow lentils and grilled shishito peppers with salt and sunflower oil. I had purchased the peppers at Mitsuwa Marketplace while in Chicago last weekend for the Pitchfork music festival. If you are ever in Chicago, I highly recommend paying them a visit.


Boxes four and five

Late to post, but beautiful to behold, what follows was boxes four and five.

The picture of our sixth is MIA. Perhaps some other kind soul will post a photo of their's.


Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Beyond Produce

One sweltering night last week, Patrick and I took a monstrous kohlrabi bulb from our garden, and some asparagus and golden beets from our co-op, and made some delicious grilled vegetables. (Grilling is the best thing that ever happened to kohlrabi, if you ask me. It softened and charred.) So, what does that have to do with our Driftless CSA?

Ta-da! Our farm makes sunflower oil! Although grilling might not be the best way to highlight this delicate oil—Farmer Josh, I promise to use it in a salad next time—I was too pumped about adding something Driftless to our meal to save it for later. So often, when we talk about eating local, staples like dry beans, grains and oils just don't seem to count. I feel we've gone a little further toward regional self-sufficiency when we have local products outside the crisper drawer.

What about you? Do you get something besides produce from local farmers? Has anyone had any luck with meat or egg shares?

Back to this week's veggies: I find the more time I have, the more I fuss with perfectly good food. What better way to turn nutritious broccoli and green garlic into something sinful than a bleu cheese quiche with a butter-black pepper crust? This was Sunday's breakfast. I love how that little garlic slice landed right in the middle.


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