Monday, July 20, 2015

CSA Round up: Week 3

After successfully using everything in the first week of my 2015 City Commons CSA, I eagerly set off to pick up the next one. [I have a bi-weekly pick up on odd weeks, so to keep things consistent, I'm using their weekly numbering system on here. This is my second basket and second post.] This week was another awesome showing:

There's lettuce, baby kale, collards, chard, cabbage, beets, oregano and sunflower sprouts. You can't tell in the picture, but that container of sprouts was huge -- it probably would have cost $10 at the grocery store. I think this CSA is very reasonably priced; my 10 week share worked out to $21.50 each. That pile would have cost a lot more to buy at the grocery store, plus I know that it's local and the quality and freshness can't be beat.

I normally try to scan my cookbooks for recipes to use the ingredients, but I winged it this time. I call my first dish "omni salad." It's essentially a chef's salad, which is one of very few omni foods I miss. The salad is lettuce, baby kale and sunflower sprouts from the basket, plus carrots, avocado, cucumber, and cherry tomatoes to round out the vegetable offerings. Now get ready for analog overload, it's also topped with: Oven Roasted Tofurky, Follow Your Heart Provolone, and Beyond Meat's Beyond Chicken Grilled Strips, plus Follow Your Heart Vegan Bleu Cheese dressing. I'll save my love of the new FYH products for another post, but suffice it to say that this salad was hearty and delicious. I also really liked the added texture from the baby kale. I'd never had it before and it was a great compliment.

While I was buying all processed/pre-made items for the salad at Whole Foods, I also picked up some Rising Moon Organics Butternut Squash Ravioli. I saluted the chard with garlic, added the cooked ravioli (tossed with a little olive oil) and topped it with oregano:

This was my first time trying the ravioli and it was pretty good. The chard was a nice addition, but I picked most of the oregano off. I'm not sure if I just had too much or it was too old, but it was not a wise addition. This would have been better swimming in a creamy sauce, but for the calories, it was good.

Much like last time, I went out of town (to Cleveland) for the weekend and lost cooking momentum. With time running out, I turned to my trusty copy of Appetite for Reduction, and found plenty of options. With the collards, I made Ye'abesha Gomen (Stewed & Saut√©ed Collards). I also threw in the greens from my beets and added a can of chickpeas. I felt like this dish belonged in r/ShittyVeganFoodPorn, so I I just decided to shovel it into my mouth while on the computer, rather than setting the table.

Isa is spot-on in her recipe description, these do taste just like the ones in Ethiopian restaurants. There are a lot of onions in there, but I think they were a perfect addition; the slightly soft and sweet taste was a good balance with the slightly bitter and chewy greens. 

Next, I made the Braised Cabbage with Seitan (also from AFR). I couldn't find any plain seitan (and was too lazy to make it), so I bought the Italian Style from Upton's Naturals. This was another super simple, super delicious meal.

And last but not least - beets!!! There were only a few and they were small, so I just boiled them and ate them as a snack with some of the FYH bleu cheese dressing mentioned above. I love beets and these were certainly a better way to get through the afternoon than a bag of chips. (Please forgive the phone pic, taken with fluorescent cubicle lighting.)

I'm pretty psyched that I'm 2/2 on using every last bit of produce in my CSA! Though I didn't technically eat the oregano, I used the beet greens, so I feel like those offset each other.

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