CSA Week 8

IMG_0235In Your Share:

Romaine Lettuce
Cucumbers and/or Zucchini
Beans or Tomatoes or Cherry Tomatoes
Baby Turnips
Kale or Komatsuna
Green Onion

Full Shares Only:

Salad Mix

This time of year it always gets hard to pick what to put in the shares, because there’s so much of everything!  Carrots or potatoes?  Which kind of onion?  Cucumbers or zucchini?  It’s a very full share today, and other than a few little stems and ends you can eat the ENTIRE BAG.  So enjoy your veggies!

New today (and one of my favorites) is romaine lettuce.  These are beautiful heads of dark green crunchy lettuce, great for summer salads or lettuce wraps or probably even for grilling.  We grow more butterhead and oak leaf lettuces in the spring, but in the warmer weather we focus on romaine.  Lettuce gets a bad rap nutritionally, but it’s actually quite nutrient packed.  It’s loaded with Vitamin A and beta carotene, as well as a wide range of other vitamins and minerals.  It particularly has several nutrients and antioxidants that are beneficial to your eyes and may prevent macular degeneration.

Another prize today is some beautiful broccoli.  Most of you will get a large head of the hybrid type, although some will get a bunch of the smaller, non-heading type.  The broccoli this year is looking fabulous, and these are fresh and tasty.

Onions today are the first of our main crop of yellow onions, which might be the best we’ve grown.  They are already starting the process of drying down and curing, but for a few more weeks you’ll get the fresh bulbs with greens attached.  Just about every onion is huge, and they are pretty sweet and mild when they are fresh like this.  Keep them in the fridge, and use the greens.  If the weather cooperates, in a few weeks we’ll be able to harvest the full crop and bring them into the greenhouse to dry down.  Then they will be just like onions you are used to seeing in the store.  But if we get a poorly timed rain, you may be getting extra onions as I try to prevent the crop from rotting!

Kale is back and coming from a new bed.  The first crop I planted this year just never thrived, so I planted more to replace it.  The new kale looks more like what we’re used to growing, green and leafy and sweet.  This is the first pick from new plants and we won’t have quite enough for everyone, so you may get komatsuna instead.  Both can be used raw, steamed, or in stir fries.  Komatsuna is closer in flavor and texture to bok choy, with a succulent stem and tender nutty leaves.  The kale is extra tender this week and would be particularly good in a salad.

Caesar Salad

A classic that will be delicious with our fresh heads of romaine.  This version comes from Bon Apetit’s May 2013 issue.

6 anchovy fillets packed in oil

1 small garlic clove

2 large egg yolks*

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

3/4 teaspoon Dijon mustard

5 tablespoons olive oil, divided

1/2 cup vegetable oil

3 tablespoons finely grated Parmesan

3 cups torn 1″ pieces country bread

Leaves from 1 head romaine lettuce

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

To make the dressing, chop together the anchovy, garlic, and a pinch of kosher salt. Use the side of a knife blade to mash into a paste, then scrape into a medium bowl. Whisk in egg yolks, lemon juice, and mustard. Adding drop by drop to start, gradually whisk in 2 tablespoons olive oil, then 1/2 cup vegetable oil; whisk until dressing is thick and glossy.

Whisk in 3 tablespoons finely grated Parmesan. Season with salt, freshly ground black pepper, and more lemon juice, if desired.

Toss 3 cups torn 1″ pieces country bread with 3 tablespoons olive oil on a baking sheet; season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Bake at 375°F, tossing occasionally, until golden, 10-15 minutes.

Use your hands to gently toss the lettuce, croutons, and dressing, then top off with the shaved Parm.

Alice Waters’ Turnip and Turnip Greens Soup

Baby turnips are a wonderful cool-season treat. They have a delightful creamy texture and just a little bite. The greens are also both delicious and nutritious. I usually just use them raw on salad, but found this recipe in Alice Waters’ The Art of Simple Food to share with you. Serves 4 to 6.


Remove the greens from:

            2 bunches young turnips with greens

Trim and discard the stems from the greens and cut into ½ inch strips.

Slice the turnips thinly.

Heat 3 Tbsp butter or olive oil in a heavy pot over medium heat and Add:

            1 onion, sliced thin

Cook until soft, about 12 minutes. Add the sliced turnips with:

1 bay leaf

            2 thyme sprigs


            2 strips bacon or prosciutto, chopped (optional)

Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cover with:

            6 c chicken or vegetable stock

Bring to a boil, the reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes. Add the turnip greens and cook for another 10 minutes or until the greens are tender.


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