In last week’s CSA box, we received: one bunch carrots, one head cauliflower, three beets, one bunch green onions, one celery root with leaves, two cucumbers, two kohlrabi, one cabbage, one bag potatoes, one bunch spinach, one bunch chard, two heads garlic, two onions, two bell peppers, two heads broccoli, and one Yugoslavian finger squash.
I’m not sure what to do with the celery root. I am actually familiar with some celery root recipes, but this particular root is so small that it hardly seems worth it to cook it as its own side dish. Maybe I will just throw it in the next time I make some roast veggies.
Speaking of roast veggies, I have found an acceptable way of eating the kohlrabi! I really don’t know why I didn’t think of roasting before now. It’s still not exactly tasty, but it’s also not overwhelmingly offensive, so we’re making progress. Jesse says it tastes sort of like an unappealing potato. I’ve been roasting it with beets, carrots and onions so that there are plenty of other flavors present.
I was really happy to see the two heads of broccoli. As I’ve said in the past, it’s always extra nice when the CSA box includes those things that I would’ve bought at the store anyway, rather than requiring me to come up with some new recipe. We’ve mostly been enjoying the broccoli steamed and topped with grated cheese.
I used most of the carrots to make another batch of fermented orange ginger carrots, since my first batch came out so well. This time I decided to try slicing the carrots a bit thinner, to see if they might become slightly less crunchy. See how pretty they are?
So far I’ve cooked about half of the spinach but none of the chard. I got out a new package of bacon this morning so I’ll be cooking the chard with bacon and onions tonight. For our other veggie side dish, I’ll be roasting the whole head of cauliflower for cauliflower popcorn. With lemon and garlic chicken legs and thighs, it will all make for a scrumptious dinner!
I want to make sauerkraut with the cabbage but haven’t gotten around to it yet. If we get more cabbage this coming week, though, waiting will actually have been good because that means I can make a bigger batch. Making sauerkraut is not particularly difficult but it does dirty a fair amount of dishes so I like to make a lot at once when I can.
Lastly, I have to highlight the Yugoslavian finger squash:
We got several of these last year. I think they look like creepy aliens and was afraid I’d wake up to find them throttling me in my sleep. More importantly, though, I never found them particularly tasty. They remind me of acorn squash and I was never as fond of acorn as I am of butternut or kabocha. I guess it’s time to get more creative about how to prepare them this year. Any ideas?
Last week we also received another preserving share item: forty pounds of apples. Forty pounds of apples makes for a very heavy box! Luckily Jesse got the job of bringing it upstairs to the apartment and I just got to scoot it around on the floor whenever I wanted to move it.
We decided to dry most of the apples, since we dried a lot last year with very good results. The plan is just to eat them plain as snacks, although I have also read that you can use dried apples for baking.
To dehydrate the apples, we first cut out all the bruises, then sliced the apples using an appliance like this. (If you’re going to dehydrate apples, I highly recommend using something like that—it makes the work of slicing the apples so much faster. Plus, the slices come out mostly the same size, which is a big advantage when dehydrating.)
I laid all the slices on dehydrator trays and dried the apples overnight. We then repeated the process again the next two nights. All together we dried twenty-seven trays of apples, which I think is pretty impressive. Here are all our dried apples:
I also made some apple butter using this recipe. It was easy and came out really delicious. Now I just need to figure out what I can eat it on. I pretty much gave up baking after I had to stop eating eggs, but perhaps it’s time to try to find a grain-free, egg-free muffin recipe.
We only have about ten apples left. I’m planning on using them to make an apple crisp. Or, we may just eat them raw. I could use something easy after all that drying.
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What local foods are you eating/preserving?
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