Week 2 of Winter!

  • Rainbow Chard
  • Bulk Winter Kale Mix
  • Radish/Mesclun Micro Mix
  • Beets - Red, Gold & Chioggia
  • Purple Mini Daikon Radish
  • Leeks
  • Cipollini Onions
  • Yellow Potatoes
  • Savoy Cabbage
  • Candystick Delicata Squash
  • Pie Pumpkin

A Few of My Favorite Winter Meals...

I generally assume that if you're signed up for our Winter CSA, you're pretty adept at the seasonal-eating thing. I'm routinely impressed by the inspired concoctions our CSA members come up with in the kitchen using VF produce. In our household we eat well and we eat farm-forward (we've been teased many a time about our over-sized salad bowl), but meals typically err on the side of simple and straightforward in order to juggle busy schedules, kids, and all the rest. If you have the time to get gourmet with this week's share, do it! But if you don't, here's how I'd go about eating through that hefty tote of produce without much fuss:

  • Candystick Delicata: Cut in half, scoop out the seeds, bake it face-down on a sheet pan with some water in the pan @ 375-400 until soft. Put a pat of butter in each boat and eat with spoon, for any meal. This is a special variety of Delicata bred by Oregon's own Carol Deppe, selected for longer storage life (we don't normally still have Delicata at the end of January!) and exceptionally sweet date-like flavor. It's nicknamed the "dessert delicata." We've noticed some variability in flavor depending on size, so would love it if you'd do a side by side taste test of your larger and smaller squash and let us know what you find out.
  • Kale & Chard: Most likely we'd steam the greens and eat a big pile of them drizzled with olive oil and ume plum vinegar (tangy and salty) or reduced balsamic vinegar with a sprinkle of salt. But I also love this quick soup: Lemony White Bean Soup with Greens. I usually omit the ground turky and use kale instead of collards.
  • Micro Mix: I'd be putting this all over a radicchio salad, or cabbage slaw, or the beet recipe below - unless it got pilfered for smoothies first.
  • Beets: Roast, roast, roast! That's usually our go-to. There's also a great winter salad courtesy of Joshua McFadden (Six Seasons cookbook): Beet Slaw with Pistachios and Raisins that I love. It takes a little more time, but is 100% worth it.
  • Daikon: I love these diced up on burrito bowls, or sliced thinly in any kind of salad, or cut up for snackable veg. I usually peel them.
  • Leeks: Also great roasted sheet-pan style alongside beets, spuds, squash. They get crispy and caramelized in a 400 degree oven, with a little help from some olive oil. Also obviously a go-to ingredient for potato leek soup, or any soup. We just had them in a frittata last night - excelente!
  • Cipollini Onions: Use them anywhere, but be sure you caramelize them down first to bring out their wow factor. Perhaps the best pizza topping there is.
  • Potatoes: They were in said frittata last night. We made roasted potatoes last week. And we're having mashed spuds tonight.
  • Cabbage: This is a January King type cabbage, mostly savoy in its expression. Certainly great for fresh slaw, but I have to say the most unctuous cabbage is the one that is cut into wedges, tossed with olive and salt, and yes - you guessed it! - ROASTED at 400 (the magic oven temp) until soft and crispy and browned. Really good with leeks in the mix on the same sheet pan.
  • Pie Pumpkin: I egregiously forgot to mention when all of our CSA members got one of these last fall that this variety is called "Pie Pita" and is mulit-purpose: it has hull-less seeds that can be roasted into pepitas, and tasty meat that can become dinner or dessert (dinner: Thai Pumpkin Curry; dessert: Pie!). My sister, Abby, loves to bake and is the pumpkin pie queen of the family. I like being on the receiving end of all her experimentation and efforts.

So that's the farmer quick and dirty on how to grub down this tote. I guess the main takeaways are: stock up on olive oil and make sure your oven runs at 400 :). If so, you're golden.