GREETINGS FROM CARMELA'S CUCINA,
A couple of years ago my friend, Claudia, suggested that we join a CSA (community supported agriculture). She did all of the research on it and sent me information and after looking at several options and meeting the farmer we decided to go with Burning River Farm out of Frederic, Wi. firstname.lastname@example.org 715-653-2245.
We are currently into our sixth delivery and I am always amazed at the wonderful vegetables we get each week in our share. Mike, delivers our crops to a home in Edina on Thurs. afternoons, which is just perfect for me, so that I have a nice variety of vegetables for the weekend. Since I share it with my friend, one of us goes and picks it up, brings it to my house and we divide the box up equally. I take a look at all of the pristine clean crops and decide what I am going to make with my share and what I need to pick up later at the store to round out our menus for the weekend.
The things I love about having a crop share are that I know I am helping a farmer, that I am eating locally and really well, and the different vegetables that I get every week, that I might not buy at the store, but that I have in my box and must use.
A couple of things that Mike has had in our share that I might not have purchased, but that have been really great are Kolh Rabi, which I served last week. I simply sliced this crunchy vegetable and dipped the end in some lime juice and then into chili powder, it was a nice, light and healthy tid-bit to add to an antipasti platter that I was making. Certainly not Italian, but was a nice addition to the meats and cheeses that I was serving.
The sweet onions, sugar snap peas, arugula that we have been getting in our portion are wonderful and tasty, the onions nice and clean, the peas super sweet and the arugula is nice and peppery and has been a great addition to salads. As I write this entry I have a dozen beets roasting in the oven, when peeled and cooled they will be sliced and used in a salad that I will make for dinner tonight. With the addition of freshly mixed lettuce, some goat cheese and toasted walnuts with a light vinaigrette, I will have the perfect summer salad.
If you do not belong to a CSA this year go to a Farmer's Market and speak to the local farmers about joining their group and start enjoying the bounty of summer produce that so many others are getting delivered weekly.
As soon as my beets are finished roasting, I am off to the Minneapolis Farmer's Market for some tomatoes for a Caprase salad I will make for dinner Sunday night. I will also be looking for some sweet, ripe peaches and big, juicy blueberries that I will make into a cobbler. I made one last week for a dinner party and it was gone in minutes. Served warm and with good vanilla ice-cream, we enjoyed the best summer dessert that anyone could ask for.
Carmela Tursi Hobbins