CSA: Charleston — I will not be defeated by fruits and veggies!

I was a very busy beaver on Tuesday when I picked up our latest CSA box from Pinckney’s Produce at the Glass Onion.  I had yoga class after work, then stopped by to pick up the box, then zipped home to lay everything out and see what I got. Here’s the bounty:

It included:

  • 3 heads lettuce
  • 2 bunches mustard greens
  • cauliflower
  • broccoli
  • beets
  • turnips with greens
  • radishes
  • strawberries

The sheer volume of produce seemed greater than our first few boxes, and I was slightly concerned that we wouldn’t be able to eat it all. Again, I can’t freeze any of it for later, because we’re moving at the end of the season. This week was an Iron Chef challenge for sure!

I quickly hopped on the computer and looked for beet, turnip, and cauliflower recipes I’d bookmarked, made a grocery list, and zipped to the store to pick up what I’d need for the week.  Several of the recipes I’d chosen had prep work I could get done while I had a night to myself that would make the cooking quicker later, so I did what I could: washing and slicing, roasting cauliflower and beets, carmelizing onions, and cooking a broken-down chicken.  This will make for quicker, delicious meals later in the week that I otherwise wouldn’t be able to make on a weeknight when starving after work.

Tuesday

In addition to all that advanced prep work, I made myself a stir fry for dinner using the broccoli, radishes, and some carrots I had on hand. I think a lot of people think of radishes as garnish, or perhaps a tasty appetizer, but they’re really a great, zingy addition to stir fries and other dishes. I still had some ginger on hand from a marinade I made a while ago, so I whipped up a sauce for my veggies using grated ginger, pressed garlic, sesame oil, honey, soy sauce, sriracha, and a squeeze of lemon juice.  Served over rice, it was a very tasty meat-free meal.

Wednesday

Wednesday I used the beets I had roasted Tuesday night to make Roasted Beet Risotto.  After reading the recipe’s reviews, I made a few changes, adding garlic and sauteeing my garlic and onions in butter instead of oil, adding some rosemary, using more salt and pepper.  It turned out pretty good, and though I’m not a huge beet fan, I’m glad to have found one way I like eating beets.  We ate our risotto with a side salad featuring the lettuce, radishes, and some carrots with an oil and white wine vinegar dressing.

The risotto is shockingly pink. And surprisingly tasty given I didn't expect to enjoy a beet dish.

Wednesday I also made a pie with the strawberries, but I wasn’t crazy about it and I can’t find the recipe now. If I do find a good strawberry pie recipe (if we get strawberries again), I’ll be sure to share.

Thursday

Thursday I used the cauliflower I’d roasted and the onions I’d caramelized to make the Smitten Kitchen’s cauliflower and caramelized onion tart. Think of this as a quiche with fewer eggs. Actually, all you need to think about is this: it contains 3 kinds of cheese, and CARAMELIZED ONIONS. Make it. (One nice thing about eating less meat is having money to buy nice cheeses to make things that contain THREE KINDS OF CHEESE!)  I made mine in pre-mae pie shells, and they turned out great. We ate our tarts with a side salad featuring the lettuce, radishes, and carrot.

Friday

Friday night Jon was working and I ate leftover tart.

Saturday

Saturday I used the chicken I’d cooked on Tuesday to make a pot pie featuring the turnips and turnip greens. I mostly followed this recipe, using onion instead of leeks and shallots, and adding garlic (3 cloves. I’m a garlic fan.). In addition, I didn’t make a traditional pie crust. Normally, I confess, I top my pot pies with Bisquick biscuits. However, I didn’t have enough Bisquick, so I turned to another quick biscuit recipe I got from another Jezebel commenter a few years ago.  They only have two ingredients!

Jezebel biscuits:

  • 1 2/3 c. self-rising flour
  • 1/2 pint whipping cream (heavy cream also works)
  1. Combine ingredients and knead
  2. Gently roll out to 1/2 to 3/4 in.
  3. Cut with biscuit cutter (or, use a wine glass as a biscuit cutter! it’s what I do!)
  4. Place on ungreased cookie sheet.
  5. Bake at 450 for 12-15 minutes.

Instead of rolling out the dough and cutting it, I just patted it flat with my fingers and placed it on top of the pot pies. Way easier than hauling out a food processor to make a normal pie dough.  And the final result was very tasty.

Biscuit-topped pot pie!

The pot pie recipe calls for half a cup of white wine. This one was on sale at Harris Teeter, plus, how CUTE is that label?

Even the top of the foil was cute.

Sunday

Sunday morning, I got up and made myself a frittata with one bunch of the mustard greens, using swiss cheese left over from making the tarts. I’m not a big fan of mustard greens, but making them (or greens of any sort) into a cheesy frittata is a great way to make them tolerable. I don’t have to love every item I get in my CSA boxes, but I do make it my goal to find at least one way I’m willing to eat each item.

Monday

Monday I had leftover pot pie for lunch AND dinner, and there are still two servings left. I also had one bunch mustard greens and one head of buttercrunch lettuce leftover. Not having Jon here for 3 days this week sure makes it hard for me to get all of the CSA veggies consumed! He comes home on Thursday, but I’m leaving on Friday for the weekend, so I’m planning to give away much of what I pick up tonight to coworkers.  If I can’t enjoy the deliciousness, at least I can share it!

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8 thoughts on “CSA: Charleston — I will not be defeated by fruits and veggies!

  1. I enjoy reading your post. I used to have my veg & fruits decay in my fridge often, it’s pretty bad. Now i get the inspiration. Won’t be defeated by them anymore. Thanks for sharing.

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  2. I really like that you shared what you did as prep work to make your week go easier. I sometimes find it hard to get through turnips and beets when they are abundant but end up mashing turnips into potatoes and roasting beets to throw into salads. If I do end up with extras at the end of the week, I juice or make a pot of stock.

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  3. are those cream biscuits really good? i’ve seen recipes like that but was hesitant to try them because i wondered if they’d really rise? they look sorta puffy on your pot pie, though! one tip i’ve heard is to cut them in rectangles rather than fool with biscuit cutters — no waste for scraps. either way, i’m thinking some biscuits may be on the agenda soon.

    so i have a story related to mustard greens + foodie geekery. one of our friends who’s getting married this summer is marrying a man who is almost as meatastically enthusiastic as my husbeau, while she is an occasional meat-eater. she called in & talked to lynn rosetto kasper of the splended table (SQUEE!!!) asking for recommendations of things to fix. lynn recommended that some meals they could enjoy together would be several different ones, included sausages & greens grilled out. as an expiriment, she brought some greens to a cookout this weekend to try grilled.

    i’d seen some romaine grilled before but thought it’d be less sturdy. i’ve had roasted kale. but i’ve never grilled any greens. turns out the greens she brought were mustard greens. i was skeptical but we tossed them with olive oil, salt, & pepper & through them on the charcoal grill. they tasted wonderful! perhaps those would be good to your tastebuds.

    & i just have to say “you go, veggie queen”. pretty impressive how resourceful you are in eating your veggies.

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    • The cream biscuits aren’t like, the best biscuits ever, as those usually involve lots of butter cut in with the flour. But they really rise, thanks to self-rising flour! I’d say they’re good in a pinch, when you don’t have ingredients you need, or in a hurry when you’re hungry for breakfast and want something fast.

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  4. *ugh — “threw” them on the grill, not “through”.
    /grammar nazi self

    this is what happens when i get distracted when typing a post.

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  5. i want to join a csa so badly! i’ve tried to find one around here, but haven’t had much luck. i’ll keep trying. good job putting it all to use. how’s the house hunt going?

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  6. Just wanted to say how much I enjoy your blog. I stumbled across it on WordPress a while back and enjoy reading your posts. I was inspired by you to try a CSA, which I was toying with for quite some time. Very excited to get my first box of fruits and veggies this Tuesday! I’m sure I’ll be posting something next week about this experience. Thank you!

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  7. Oh my gosh – a friend of mine made that SK tart and I thought I had died and gone to heaven. SO GOOD. Thanks for reminding me about it, I may have to make that this week…

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