poor scientist. will blog 4 food.

the culinary adventures of a self-described foodie


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CSA Update: 9/14/12

Here’s what we got last week in our Eatwell Farm CSA box:

strawberries
basil
heirloom cherry tomatoes
early girl tomatoes
heirloom tomatoes
Middle Eastern cucumbers
grapes
gypsy and poblano peppers
eggplants
zucchini
shallots

Who loves shallots? I love shallots! Good thing too, because we got a bag full of them, about 10-15! I like that they are less pungent than red onions with a hint of sweetness like garlic. Since TC and I had just did our quarterly shopping trip at the Marin Sun Farms butcher counter in Rockridge, we had some ground pork on hand to make stir fry. We combined the pork, zucchini, eggplants, shallots, tomato, and peppers to make a five spice stir fry extravaganza!

Stir fry over jasmine rice. Easy and delicious weeknight meal.

One combination I really like is eggs with tomatoes. So we made a veggie scramble with eggs, tomatoes, basil, and peppers, topped with avocado. Yummers!

A fabulous way to start the morning.

If you’re a regular reader, you’ll know that I have my go-to dishes for finishing up the CSA produce. One of them is pasta with veggies. The pasta this week was fusilli, and the veggies were basil, tomatoes, peppers, zucchini, and garlic. I added some Trader Joe’s jalapeno chicken sausages to make it more hearty. The great thing about this dish was that one pot lasted me the whole week!

An oldie but a goodie.

We got an email the other day informing us that our 13 week CSA subscription is almost finished. That means almost 26 weeks have passed – one half of a year! How fast time flies. TC and I discussed briefly whether to continue on this CSA journey. We agreed that while we could’ve put more produce in our bellies and less in the compost bin, we’ve done a pretty good job overall. I like that it’s made me notice what’s seasonal and to plan my meals accordingly. And of course, we love Eatwell and want to continue to support their mission. What this means for you is continued CSA posts for the foreseeable future. Woohoo!

p.s. Can’t get enough of CSA goodies? Check out this week’s link party over at In Her Chucks to check out CSA boxes from all over the country!


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CSA Update: 7/15/12

This will be the last CSA update for almost a month, as I’m leaving tomorrow for a 3 week trip to Taiwan! Not sure how much I’ll be blogging while I’m away… so if, for some reason, you go into willblog4food withdraw, you can always read (or re-read) my Taiwan posts from previous trips. Enjoy!

Here’s what we got in our Eatwell CSA box last Wednesday:

strawberries
basil
cherry tomatoes (!)
Roma, shady lady, or early girl tomatoes
Middle Eastern cucumbers
mixed lettuce
plums
Italian flat leaf parsley
zucchini
Wakefield cabbage
white spring onions
Colorado rose potatoes? (the ones we got were definitely not red-skinned as advertised)

Not sure if you could tell by my exclamation point above, but I was super excited about the tomatoes, and the cherry tomatoes in particular. Our first tomatoes of the season! We made Creamy Orecchiette with Cherry Tomatoes, Basil, and Garlic, a recipe included with the CSA box. It was very easy and tasty!

Mmmm, creamy pasta with sweet cherry tomatoes and loads of basil.

We also made a salad with the mixed lettuce, cucumber, and strawberries, adding some nut for crunch.

colorful summer salad

As much as we love stir-frying zucchini, I opted to make zucchini bread this time. It was good, but I’m not sure this was the best recipe. I felt like it had a little too much spice and not enough zucchini. Once I find the perfect recipe, I’ll be sure to share it with y’all. These loaves sure did look and smell great coming out of the oven, I have to say.

Zucchini bread, fresh from the oven.

I’ve been wanting to make potato salad for a while, and the red potatoes were a perfect candidate. Except that the ones we got weren’t really red… so it’s possible there was a mix up? In any case, we decided to make potato salad (American style = sweet relish, red onion, celery, mayo, and hard-boiled egg) for a BBQ Saturday with TC’s family and my sister’s family. The potato salad was just OK — we left the skins on, but I think for this variety of potato, we probably should have skinned them. We also made a green salad with walnuts, dried cranberries, apple, and homemade vinaigrette. TC’s family provided macaroni salad, grilled chicken, baked beans, corn, a dreamy chocolate pudding dessert concoction, and lemon bars. That’s what I call a BBQ!

The BBQ spread, top left going down: potato salad, green salad, baked beans, macaroni salad, corn, and chicken (on upper right).

Oh, and somewhere in the last week, we made homemade salsa with the other tomatoes and spring onion to put on top of breakfast burritos. We’ve also been dipping cucumbers slices in hummus. Delish!

p.s. Can’t get enough of CSA goodies? Check out this link party over at In Her Chucks!


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CSA Update: 5/20/12

What’s that saying? “The squeaky wheel gets the grease”… or something like that? Well, after  Ashlee from Eatwell Farms read my complaint about the lackluster strawberries, she actually offered to send me replacements! In an email, she wrote,

We’d be glad to send you extra strawberries with your next delivery on May 16th.  They’ll be in a separate paper bag with your name.  Anytime you receive sub-par produce, please send me an email, and I’ll schedule a replacement.

I heart Ashlee and I heart Eatwell Farms! Even more so after we went strawberry picking yesterday, but that’s a future post.

Back to the business at hand! Here’s what we got in our Eatwell CSA box on Wednesday:

strawberries
cilantro
arugula
romaine lettuce
French breakfast radishes
spinach
eureka lemons
fava beans
chard
red spring onions
green garlic
wakefield cabbage
bonus: basil tips

Due to our upcoming crazy busy weekend, we knew we weren’t going to get to cook very much. So we had to strategize — what would we cook and what would we give away?

For Wednesday, TC had a brilliant idea: PIZZA! Now, even though I’m a lactard, I still like to have pizza every once in a while (with 1-2 lactaid pills, of course). We got refrigerated ready-made dough and sauce from Whole Foods and set to work. We piled on the toppings: cheese (duh), basil, spinach, mushrooms, red onion, jalapeno peppers, and green garlic. It was SO GOOD! And pretty easy too. We made two pizzas — one regular (white flour) crust and one whole wheat crust. On the side, we made an easy salad with romaine lettuce, carrots, red onion, and avocado with honey mustard dressing (not homemade, sadly). It was a very successful adventure. I’m certain that pizza night will make it into our regular CSA rotation.

Homemade pizza = fun, easy, and delicious.

Besides the romaine lettuce, we had a LOT of greens to work with, as usual. TC took the cabbage to use or give away, which left me with the arugula, spinach, and chard. I was inspired by recent success with making random pasta dishes to try again with these greens. Basically, I made Bacon and Broccoli Pasta but subbing broccoli with greens. I also added some of the basil and green garlic. And guess what? It was great! I love salad, but I love pasta more. Not to mention that pasta lasts so much longer as leftovers.

Prepping the greens. Lots and lots of greens!

Finished product, garnished with Parmesan. Delish.

And just like that, we used most of our CSA box!

p.s. Can’t get enough of CSA goodies? Check out this link party over at In Her Chucks!

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