Thursday, July 9, 2009

CSA Share Week 6

We’re so glad to be seeing those purple carrots. We think they’re pretty amazing. If anything, we love that our 4-year-old daughter eats them like they’re candy. Now if only our toddler would take after her that way. This variety, called Purple Haze, has more carrot taste than just about any other carrot we’ve eaten. Certainly, it beats the woody, flavorless ones we too often encounter in stores. They’re terrific as a fresh snack, but we also love to roast them as it concentrates their sweet flavor. Before roasting, wash the carrots but don’t bother peeling. Toss with extra-virgin olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Roast in a 425° F oven on a baking sheet with raised edges until they feel tender when skewered with a fork, 25 to 30 minutes. About halfway through cooking, do shake the baking pan back and forth so that the golden undersides of the carrots roll to face upwards.

In this week’s share:
1 bunch purple basil (see storage tip below)
1 head of Romaine lettuce
1 red cabbage (see recipe ideas below)
1 bunch of green onions (make use of the fresh, green tops!)
5 zucchini
1 head of garlic (you can let “cure” on the countertop--out of direct sun—for longer storage)
1 bunch of beets
1 bunch of purple carrots

Basil is delicate and quick to go by. Store it in your fridge, stem side down in a cup with a little water. Tent the leafy tops with a plastic bag to protect from the refrigerator’s cold air.

We know cabbage is the kind of thing some people can’t get enough of and others don’t know what to do with (or just don’t like). Here are a couple of recipes that might convert the latter camp.

Red Leaf & Cabbage Salad with Grilled Tarragon Chicken
If you have red leaf lettuce left over from last week, that’s what this recipe calls for. Otherwise, substitute with this week’s Romaine. And don’t hesitate to substitute the fresh tarragon for this week’s basil or last week’s parsley, if you still have that on hand. Don’t bother buying a shallot. Use the white bulb part of one of your smaller green onions.

Grilled Red and Green Cabbage Slaw
Grilled cabbage? Why not! Doesn’t everything taste better on the grill? And you get to make use of your green onions too.
Here are some tips on how to get around buying ingredients you might not have for this recipe:
Substitute basil or parsley for the tarragon;
Use all red cabbage (no need to go buy yourself a green head);
Also, don’t feel like you need tarragon vinegar. A red or white vinegar, even balsamic, can make a fine substitute.

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