CSA Week 7
I have a confession to make, vegetable friends- I missed Week 6 altogether. My husband and I went out of town for a week, to attend my sister’s wedding in Oregon, and as a result I have no idea what was in the box. Jessica, my share partner, got to keep the whole thing. But Week 7 brought some delicious variety!
There’s cucumbers, corn, some freaky long green beans, amaranth, Cousa squash, lettuce, potatoes, carrots, collards, scallions and fresh basil!
My half of this went on top of some black bean tacos, along with that chopped lettuce and fresh mango you see in the background.
I also cooked up the entire bag of green beans for our two households to share. When I think of green beans, I think of Green Bean Casserole. Then I feel guilty about wanting to smother those gorgeous, fresh, local beans with canned soup and fried salty bits. Using some of my pantry standbys (shallots, almonds and shelf-stable wine), I came up with an alternative.
Instead of Green Bean Casserole
1 pound green beans, rinsed and snapped
6 oz mushrooms
2 large shallots
1 oz slivered almonds
1/2 cup white cooking wine
Salt and pepper to taste
Blanch the green beans. I usually add them to a pot of boiling water and cook for no more than a minute, but I like my beans crunchy. Drain the beans and set aside.
Melt the butter in a saucepan. Add the mushrooms and saute. When the mushrooms are just tender, add the shallots. Saute for a minute until the shallots soften. Add the almonds and the cooking wine. Simmer, stirring, until the wine is reduced by half. Add the beans to the mushroom mixture and toss. Add salt and pepper, if desired. Serves 6.
Calories 105, Fat 6.5g, Saturated Fat 3g, Carbohydrate 8g, Fiber 3g, Protein 3g.
I had been looking forward to the first amaranth of the season- it was the best surprise out of last year’s box. I have fallen in love with pigweed! Last year, I treated it like any other green and steamed it with ginger and scallions, but this week I decided to stir-fry. I browned some seitan in sesame oil, added the amaranth and some soy sauce for a moment, then served it topped with fresh cucumber and cilantro.
Mmm. Tastes like college.
The potatoes, squash and basil went into Friday night’s dinner. I made some pesto cream cheese by chopping about a cup of basil leaves and 2T of pine nuts in my tiny food processor, then whipped that into half a bar of softened cream cheese. Then I pounded out some chicken breasts (so cathartic!) and rolled them up with a glob of the cream cheese mixture and some sliced tomatoes.
Then I fastened up the chicken-packets with toothpicks. I call this “Frankenstein Chicken”.
The packets shaped up to be roughly triangular, so I browned them on each side, covered the pot and finished them in the oven. I am not including my own recipe, because when I made these last week the chicken didn’t quiiiiiiiite cook through and I would not want anyone to follow my directions and get food poisoning. Here is one you could use instead.
I served my dangerous little cutlet with the squash and some fennel, and the roasted potatoes. Bon appetit! Don’t get salmonella!