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June 7, 2012

Our CSA started up two weeks ago, and we’ve been swimming in greens. There was a hailstorm the day before our first pick up, and we received an email telling us that many crops were severely damaged—some tens of thousands of heads of lettuce—and so our expectation of these early shares were low. Our first week, our box had garlic scapes, kale, two enormous bags of spinach, Japanese hakueri turnips, leeks, chard and two heads of red leaf lettuce, and there were two quarts of PYO strawberries, which we pretty much devoured on our way home from the farm. We made garlic scape and spinach pesto, kale chips, a chard and gruyere quiche, many salads and I sautéed and ate an entire bag of spinach with lemon juice, garlic and pine nuts and ate it, by myself! We roasted the leeks with a head of cauliflower and some potatoes that we ordered with our dairy/beef/chicken co-op products and tossed all of it in the pesto with some roasted pastured chicken and were left with only the turnips yesterday when we went to pick up our second box.


Yesterdays box had more garlic scapes, leeks and chard, five heads of lettuce!, beets, radishes, broccoli and bok choy. we had a huge salad last night, had cheesy eggs with chard and pesto for breakfast and made garlic scape hummus wrapped in chard leaves with sliced radishes for lunch. Tonight for dinner, we’re having roasted broccoli soup and a huge salad, and I’ll have to come up with some protein beyond the chicken stock that will be in the soup. Some days, I feel like I’m eating like it’s my job. I’ve been following the Brewer “diet” for pregnancy and trying to keep track of my protein, but it’s so hard to eat so much, and drink enough water and not feel like all I do is eat and drink!


I’m glad we held onto the turnips and didn’t just toss them in a salad since I plan on making a miso-butter glazed turnip and bok choy dish with tempeh later this week—tempeh is one of my favorite foods and I allow myself to eat it since, while it’s soy, it’s fermented and ancient and probiotic and delicious! The beets have been challenging, we ordered “a bunch” from our dairy co-op and that bunch turned out to be almost five pounds! We roasted those, and have been eating them in salads, but we got another bunch in the CSA box and now I’m feeling overwhelmed. I’m contemplating chocolate beet something, and throwing the roasted beets in a jar with some onions and balsamic vinegar for a quick pickle. A few weeks ago, I was overwhelmed by strawberries until I plugged away at putting up a small batch of four or five jars a day til they were gone and then I beamed with pride as I gave away a few jars, made strawberry ice cream and strawberry cakes and still had beautiful ruby red row of  jam in my pantry. And  the radishes a week or so ago—our garden produced SO.MANY. RADISHES and they were the first colorful thing to emerge from our wee garden that we enthusiastically ate them with salt on buttered sourdough a few times before realizing that they just kept coming! We pulled them all and I made a fantastic Indian spiced radish relish with them, from one of my favorite canning cookbooks “Put “em Up!” which had the fabulous suggestion of using the relish in potato salad, and now I can’t wait til the potatoes start coming in droves so I can whip up a spicy-sweeet potato salad for potlucks and parties. But the beets. I think it may have to be one of those weird hiding-vegetables-in- places-you-wouldn’t-expect recipes for those. And the garlic scapes? I know last year I was exhausted by the number of scapes we got, week after week, but I think I’ll just make some pesto for the freezer and come January, I’ll appreciate the memory of  bare shoulders, open windows and mosquito bites. Wait, scratch that last part. Freezer pesto–it’s always nice to have a bit of summer to eat on a cold winter’s day, which is why, despite Michael’s attempts at putting it away, the giant canning pot now lives on our tiny stovetop, waiting for all the bounty that’s only just begun. And at that, I just got a text alerting me to the availability of SOUR CHERRIES at a farm not too far away, so it’s time to put on our boots, grab a stepstool and our sunhats and jump in the car!

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