Never Waste a Vegetable
To see what it was like for our CSA members, our family recently started portioning out a whole CSA share for ourselves, rather than treating the garden as our extended household refrigerator like we usually do. We found that, first of all, there's a knack to getting all that food into the fridge, a
nd second, the abundance of greens this time of year means getting creative about fresh food triage.
Here are our thoughts on the matter:
1. Prep ahead.
To get everything in the fridge, we found we needed to...
- make a salad with the lettuce (and some of the radishes and carrots) and have it that night for dinner
- break the radish and carrot tops off and either a) compost them or b) get going with some carrot-top pesto and radish greens soup.
- prepare a raw kale salad (recipe here)
- wash, spin, and chop the beet greens and chard. Together, they cooked down to a medium bowl. We find that when they're prepared like this, we are much more likely to add them to eggs, rice dishes, and whatever else we're eating.
- wrap the basil (unwashed) in a tea towel and store it in the bottom drawer. Basil is probably the most tender green we grow, and will turn black if it gets too damp or cold.
- make a green smoothie the next morning with the arugula
2. Good tools are your friend. This time of year, we wouldn't want to do without...
a salad spinner
We strive to clean all the food here at the farm, but you might find some grit in your vegetables if you don't clean them off well. A salad spinner is great for this. They're easy to find at thrift stores.
We like to store prepped and cooked greens in glass bowls so we don't forget about them. Mason jars and regular tupperware also get the job done.
3. These days our pantry is well-stocked with...
citrus & vinegars
A dash of something sour really makes the flavor of greens come alive.
good fats like lard and olive oil
Fat carries flavor, so be sure you don't skimp on it when you prepare greens.
CSA members can get our pasture-raised lard (both leaf lard and regular lard) as part of your pork share. Pork and greens are so great together. If you've never tried southern-style greens, simmered with a smoked pork hock, I tell you friend. I tell you.
foods high in
'Umami' is a taste, like sweet, sour, salty, and bitter. It's a Japanese word most often translated as 'savoriness'. Especially high umami foods like anchovies, Parmesan, and celery go great with greens.
We welcome comments! How do you make the most of your vegetable share?