CSA Box Number Three

The Contents of Our Third Box

This morning, we picked up our third CSA box of the summer. This box was the biggest yet – 3/4 bushel, whereas our previous boxes were only 5/9 bushel. Plus, this time our farm offered basil as an ‘option’ crop, meaning that they left a huge box full of it at our pickup location and said “take as much as you want.” Since I neglected to bring a bag, I literally stuffed my pockets full of basil. Tomorrow, we’ll make a big batch of pesto and freeze it in single-meal portions with the help of a couple of ice cube trays. Our goal is to make enough while basil is in season to make it through the winter (we eat lots of pasta).

While we have no doubt what to do with the basil, we’re not so sure about some of the other items. What, if anything, can you do with pickling cucumbers other than pickle them? Can the two of us possibly make it through four regular cucumbers before they go bad? What should we do with beets? Can we find a way to prepare our cauliflower that we’ll actually like? What’s special about Cippolini onions? But, we’ve done pretty well with unfamiliar veggies so far, so I’m sure we’ll have some interesting culinary adventures this week!

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6 Responses to CSA Box Number Three

  1. Casey says:

    Have you ever tried mashed cauliflower? It is very good. Make it just like mashed potatoes but use cauliflower instead. I’m sure there are a ton of recipes online, but it is particularly good with some roasted garlic mixed in, butter, milk, salt, and pepper.
    Hope all is well!

  2. Staci says:

    I really like making Tzatziki sauce with cucumbers. Its very simple to make. The basic ingredients are pureed cucumbers, garlic, yogurt, mint, salt,and lemon juice – although you can find different variants of the recipe. Its great with pita bread!

  3. CSAs are great! Here in Madison WI, our many CSAs have an umbrella organization that coordinates with health care providers who offer rebates to help defray the cost of CSA membership up to $200 per family a year. They also raise funds to assist low income families who want to eat fresh food. Check it out at http://digginginthedriftless.wordpress.com/2009/07/10/csas-madison-style-or-insuring-good-nutrition/
    The only thing that makes fresh, local food taste better is sharing it.
    This might work in your area too.
    Healthy food for all!
    Denise Thornton

  4. Patricia Atkinson says:

    You can use pickling cucumbers for salad – just slice and then marinate them in vinegar for several hours [or overnight]. You can also use pickling cucumbers in tsatziki.
    You can add seeded, peeled, diced cucumbers to fresh salsa or pico de gallo or ceviche!
    Cauliflower – if you don’t like it raw with dip or steamed with butter, trade it to someone else. Cauliflower, like broccoli, is something you either like or don’t. The Italians pickle it, which I sort of like.

  5. Dave says:

    Hi everyone, thanks for all the suggestions. I can’t believe I’d forgotten about Tsaziki! I’ll have to make a batch tonight or tomorrow. We did try one of the pickling cukes on a salad just raw yesterday. It was pretty good, a little nuttier than regular cukes, but tasty. We may try your mashed cauliflower suggestion, Casey. It’s hard to go wrong with butter, roasted garlic, and pepper.

  6. Patricia Atkinson says:

    Well, yeah, we know you’ll eat almost anything if it has butter, garlic, and fresh cracked pepper on it!!!

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