CSA ’14, Weeks 14-15

Today you get a two-for-one post, because I seriously am that behind up here on The Spicy Simmer. Don’t get me wrong – I love to blog! – but life has gotten in the way lately and by the time I get some free time to blog, I end up horizontal on the couch falling asleep watching The Tonight Show on Hulu. So, that’s where I’ve been…sorry!!

Week 14 seemed a little bit smaller than what we’re used to, but I’m not complaining one bit. With my schedule as crazy as it’s been, there has been a lot more preserving and a lot less creativity. Oh well – it is what it is!

Week 14

Week 14

We ended up getting a watermelon – imagine that! We also had the first squash of the fall season (I’m so glad those keep!) and tomatoes are still making an appearance. I was especially thankful for the garlic; I just can’t seem to get enough!

Week 15

Week 15

I feel as though Week 15 made up for whatever Week 14 may have been lacking. Look at the difference in the amount of produce! Lettuce, onions, garlic, parsley, peppers, potatoes, tomatoes, a celery & celery root, and zucchini. The celery root & celery immediately went into the freezer for use in winter soups. I’ve blanched the peppers and put the parsley into a glass of water in the refrigerator.

While this post may be a bit lacking, rest assured that I do have some recipes on the way to share with you! Hopefully by the end of this week I’ll get them finally up and running. Thanks for sticking by me thus far – I know there are some of you out there who are faithful readers and haven’t given up on me yet, so thanks for sticking by me during this dry spell of sorts 🙂

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CSA’14: Week 13

Where is September going? The first day of fall is tomorrow…it was chilly this week…part of me is ready for fall and the other is trying to desperately cling to flip-flops and sundresses.

At least I can wear my Birkenstocks with socks if need be, right? 😉

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• carrots
• red butter lettuce
• cucumbers
• jalapeño peppers
• onions
• lots of tomatoes – made into salsa later that evening
• green bell peppers
• kohlrabi
• lacinato kale – washed and frozen for soup this winter

Any fun goodies in your boxes this week?

CSA ’14: Week 12

This past week was so, so hectic! Between both school, the bakery, and meetings, I didn’t really have a lot of time to play. Thankfully, the coming week has me a little less frantic, so there’s more time to really create some fun things in our kitchen and actually cook for a change – as opposed to either Hubs making dinner or us getting take out. Don’t get me wrong, though – my husband has been a huge help and so patient as I get used to the new routine!

This past week , we had our usual favorites to enjoy!

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  • romaine lettuce – Salads for lunches
  • onions
  • garlic – Used in a soup recipe…coming soon!
  • celery & celery root?!  – My husband had asked the farm helpers what to do with this, and they said that it was really great for stock. Thus this was cut and put right into the freezer.
  • grape tomatoes – Roasted and ready for anything!
  • potatoes – These will be served with flank steak. Yum!
  • green and purple peppers – Used in chicken fajitas.
  • zucchini & squash – Most likely, this will go along with the flank steak and potatoes.
  • slicing tomatoes – Now I finally have enough for a batch of salsa

The weather is starting to really feel like fall, and I’m not sure how I feel about it. We barely had a summer! Even worse, our house got so cold Friday night that we had to *gulp* turn on the heat Saturday morning to get the chill out. Let’s just hope that the fall weather stays for a while, or the warmer summer air returns. Heaven knows we’re not ready for white stuff yet…

CSA ’14: Week 11

School has started and we are back into the swing of things. So much so, that I’ve been a little behind on almost every single to-do list. I’ll get there (I hope).

This past week we at least remembered to pick up our CSA on time!

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In this past week’s box…
melon!
tomatillos! I made a great salsa last year and I’ll (finally) be making it next week
jalapeño and Fresno peppers
green peppers
pickling cukes
eggplant
lettuce
slicing tomatoes
cherry tomatoes
onions
basil

Any fun things in your CSA this week?

Jalapeño Coleslaw

Summer is all about cookouts, and with it being late summer, these gatherings are still in full force. I’m not complaining one bit – the next few weekends for us are filled with plenty of get-togethers with friends and family. Obviously, it’s good to have several ‘entertaining’ dishes up your sleeve for these occasions.

My husband is a big fan of coleslaw. With me, I could take it or leave it – at least, the stuff that you see pre-made at the deli and/or sold in bulk. I had never tried my hand at homemade coleslaw up until a week or two ago. Now that I have, it might be safe to say that I’ve turned a corner of sorts.

Don’t let the name fool you – this coleslaw does have a jalapeno pepper in it, but it isn’t overpowering at all. It gives just a bit of a bite.

Jalapeño Coleslaw

adapted from Serious Eats

For the Dressing:

  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 3 tbsp mayonnaise
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 3 tbsp lime juice
  • 3 tbsp cilantro, finely chopped – I used the stuff that they sell in the tube. Love it.
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper

For the Slaw:

  • 1 large head of green cabbage
  • 1-2 carrots; peeled and grated
  • 1 large jalapeno – stemmed, seeded and diced (unless you want it super hot)
  1. Make the dressing: whisk together all dressing ingredients. Set aside (or in the refrigerator).
  2. Make the slaw: Using a mandolin, shred the cabbage; if you don’t have one, then finely chop it by hand.
  3. Combine the cabbage, carrot and jalapeno in a large bowl. If serving right away, pour dressing over vegetables and toss to coat. Add salt, pepper and/or sugar and season to taste. If serving later, refrigerate the slaw until ready to serve (or transport in a cooler). Mix everything together when it’s time to eat.
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I know, I know. Functionality over plating…

 

I really enjoyed this dish. We brought it over to a friend’s house for a cookout where they were serving pulled pork sandwiches. It paired really well together. The cumin, lime juice and pepper give this coleslaw a Southwestern flair to it; you could easily serve this with chicken or with fish tacos, too. It tastes wonderfully fresh and beats the store-bought slaw, hands down. Then again, homemade dishes beat store-bought ones anyways, right?

They say Labor Day is the end of summer, but don’t let it – keep on enjoying this great weather!

CSA ’14: Week 10

This past week, we were so busy that we even forgot to pick up our CSA on Tuesday; we ended up getting it a day late. Thank goodness for patient farmers 🙂 I’ve been doing what I can to process as I go, but I also put in a lot of hours at the bakery so I still have quite a bit to do tonight before school tomorrow.

I think I’m ready for it. It will be nice to get back into a routine of sorts!

  • IMG_1912cherry tomatoes
  • I think zebra tomatoes?
  • two heads of lettuce – Salads for lunch – no matter what!
  • onions
  • jalapeno peppers – I think a can of pickled jalapenos is finally in order!
  • green peppers
  • larger tomatoes – I finally had enough to make a batch of salsa
  • zucchini
  • cucumbers – made into pickles
  • potatoes – Just the right amount for potato salad on Labor Day!
  • kale
  • eggplant – I have some Indian and Moroccan meal-makers in my pantry…this may be a great *quick* dish for yoga night.
  • parsley – I’ll be making chimichurri to freeze.

My husband asked me the other day why we haven’t had so many tomatoes to process this year – I blame the wacky Michigan weather! However with this warmer spell in the coming week, maybe we’ll get a few more! ::fingers crossed::

 

CSA ’14: Week 9

One week left of true summer break…teacher workdays are next week! Where has the summer gone? I think it’s safe to say, however, that I am starting to look forward to it.

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eggplant – I made a huge batch of eggplant parmesan, which will be clutch for lunches this week
green cabbage
jalapeño/serrano peppers
two heads of lettuce
tomatoes – I only received this through the top-off feature, which was surprising…
red and white onions
beets…it must be one of those years for beets!
rainbow chard

So far this week, I’ve purchased peaches, burger, and eggs at the market.

Any suggestions out there for beets!? Even with the batch of beet beer, we still have a bagful. Help!