Monday, July 13, 2009

CSA Monday! Big Squash Edition

CSA season is in full swing here in the DC area. Spring greens are giving way to summer vegetables which is tres exciting. But then the problem is: What do I do with a mess of vegetables every week?

This is a problem I've heard my fellow CSAers lament as we stand in line to pick up our shares. So, I've thought that I would share what I do with my produce.

[geek moment]

To me, meal planning is like a logic puzzle. In short, I try to solve this equation every week:

meals = max(CSA share veg) + min(new groceries) + pantry/freezer items

In words: how can I use up all my share with buying as few additional things as possible? This is my challenge every week. And I totally get excited at considering all the possible combinations. Almost too excited.

[/geek moment]

This week I got 1 good-sized head of cabbage, 1 large patty-pan squash, 1 large zucchini, 7 potatoes about the size of a fist, 1 fresh garlic, 1 small head of broccoli and 1 bunch of basil. This week's plan?

Very Veggie Pasta Salad: the squashes, a clove of garlic, broccoli, & basil + half a pound of pasta, sun dried tomatoes, sun gold tomatoes from the garden, balsamic vinaigrette (balsamic vinegar, dijon mustard, oil, dried basil, dried oregano, olive oil, & honey).

Nana's Cabbage Rolls Unrolled (aka Katy's Cabbage Roll Casserole): the cabbage & garlic + onions, rice, ground beef, paprika, raisins, canned tomatoes and (believe it or not) can of condensed tomato soup. The recipe sounds bizarre but for me it's comfort food...and very retro 1950s!

Quick pickles: cucumbers & garlic + dill, vinegar & some other spices I have around. This will be used as a side with burgers for this weekend.

Oven garlic fries: potatoes & garlic + olive oil. To also go with the burgers this weekend.

If you were given this particular mess of vegetables, what would you do?

1 comment:

  1. I agree, it's a wonderful problem to have to conend with so much bounty each week.
    I live in Madison WI, where we have a very active CSA system, with an umbrella organization that coordinates several pioneer health insurers who offer healthy eating rebates to help cover the cost of CSA membership. They also raise funds to assist low-income families who want to benefit from local food.
    I just posted the details about this program earlier this week at my blog.
    Check it out.
    Healthy, fresh eating for everyone!
    Denise Thornton