This post is going out a lot later than normal. For some reason I haven’t been finding the time to write lately! I hope to remedy that soon, but for now I’ll just have to see how things go.
Anyway, here’s what came in our share last week:
That’s two heads of green leaf lettuce, a few garlic scapes, one bunch beets, one bunch green onions, one bag snow peas, two bunches spinach, two bags diced rhubarb, one bunch cilantro, one bunch pesto, two heads green garlic, and one bag dried navy beans. Yes, it’s pretty much the same as what we got the first two weeks…but that is the reality of early season produce in Colorado.
I discovered something amazing in the past couple of weeks: in certain dishes I actually like spinach! In the past I’ve mostly eaten spinach simply sautéed with a bit of garlic. Recently, however, I’ve been making more diversified spinach sautés, incorporating green onions, garlic scapes, mushrooms, snow peas and/or tomatoes. It’s quite delicious. Those extra ingredients make the texture and overall flavor much more appealing. I can’t say that we’re completely staying on top all of our spinach abundance, but this new cooking method is turning spinach from something I avoid to something I actually look forward to eating.
I’ve also discovered that sautéed garlic scapes are awesome. I know that I mentioned that I was planning on roasting all of our garlic scapes because I didn’t like them sautéed. Well, turns out I was wrong about that. I’d thought that they were tough and chewy when sautéed, but it turns out that we were actually noticing the tough middle parts of the green onions that I was cooking with the garlic scapes. Once I stopped using that part of the green onion the garlic scapes were revealed as being perfectly yummy. And, I love that they are just as quick to use as a garlic clove and you don’t even need to clean the garlic press! Now I will be sad when they’re done for the season.
I also now love green onions. Last year I remember being really intimidated by green onions as I didn’t have much experience cooking them. Now, though, I’ve figured out the best way to cut and cook them so that the entire onion gets well-cooked but not burned. (I really do not like raw or undercooked onions.) And I appreciate how they’re faster to prepare than mature onions and also take a lot less time to cook. I’ve been putting them into my spinach sautés as well as peanut sauce stir-fries.
After last week I had two bunches of beets in the fridge so I made a half gallon of beet kvass. I have really been slacking on my fermented veggies lately so it was good to get something fermented made. Making kvass always makes me feel productive.
We’ve been receiving dry beans the last few weeks, but since last week’s beans were navy beans we were actually able to eat them! I haven’t bothered cooking beans on GAPS so I was really excited. I sprouted them (which I always find fun) and then cooked them with some onion and garlic. I used half to make some white chicken chili and then stuck the other half in the fridge to use for other things. The chili was quite tasty.
Room for Improvement and a Few Plans
The herbs are still kicking my butt. We’ve been using the cilantro on top of Mexican dishes but there’s just so much of it I can’t keep up! And it’s really overpowering if you use more than a couple tablespoons at a time. Same for the parsley. I put some in the chicken chili I made, but that only took a tablespoon and we’re getting a bunch a week. I think I need to hunt down some recipes that use a LOT of cilantro or parsley at once because this using it in a lot of little things just isn’t cutting it.
I ended up throwing both bags of rhubarb from week two into the freezer. Jesse made another fruit crisp with one and a half of the bags from this week. That’s a pretty good way to use the rhubarb, although it doesn’t quite keep up with the supply as we don’t feel like eating crisp all the time. On the other hand, though, maybe throwing it in the freezer to use later isn’t such a bad idea. From what I remember from last year rhubarb season doesn’t last very long so maybe it will be nice to have some frozen for later in the year.
I’m also experimenting with throwing a few chunks of rhubarb into my water kefir. I’m not sure whether that will work at all because I’ve found that juicer fruits (like strawberries) tend to work best for flavoring water kefir, and the rhubarb does not seem very juicy. I will just have to see how it turns out.
I have not been using the green garlic much because of all the garlic scapes. I think I’m going to try fermenting the green garlic. I’ve never fermented garlic before but I’ve heard it’s supposed to be fantastic.
What are you getting in your CSA box?
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