I split a share with 2 other families last year and it worked out so well that we decided to do it again this year! We realized that this way we each get a bounty of goodies every 3 weeks, and not the weekly/ bi-weekly necessity. Each of our families have 3-4 hearty mouths to feed and individually all have a love of cooking. Splitting our CSA was a way to support local farms, but still be able to manage the amount of produce we committed to. Our share consists of fruit, berries, veggies and egg.
I’ve gotten in the habit of combining the Monday pick up with an outdoor activity for my 3y/o Evan. The park across from The Woods is a perfect place to hangout, have a picnic dinner or run around for an hour or so, before we pick up our produce.
Since I find myself juggling quite a bit during the week (freelancing, an energetic toddler, school, a dog, a hard working husband and toddler classes & activities), I make an effort to spend one day cooking a multitude of things in anticipation of the busy week ahead. Though I do tend to cook most of our meals, I have learned many ways to cut cut corners and save time.
I start with the easy stuff, like a container of fresh cut fruits & veggies for quick snacks, then layer in things like a tuna fish salad, smoothies, or dips. I’m a huge snacker, so I like to have lots of options in my fridge, especially since my husband recently challenged me to eat processed food as little as possible.
When I can’t get through all the fruit or produce, I freeze them in small increments to use in smoothies, soups, stews or frozen treats.
This week I picked up fresh green bunch of asparagus & a dozen eggs. I stored it in a vase until I was able to cook with it – which had to go on the counter since it didn’t fit in our fridge. In an attempt to bring a new twist to asparagus, I shaved it with a peeler, tossed it with a lemon zest vinaigrette, then topped it off with mozzarella, tomato & cracked pepper.
I did a winter vegetable & meat share and used some of those items as additions to few of the meals I created this week. One of the amazing cuts of meat I received from my CSA was a 3lb rump roast. I marinated it with garlic, turmeric, olive oil, salt & pepper before roasting it fat side up) for 1.5 – 2 hrs. I enlisted my son Evan as my sous chef an taxed him with the job of inserting garlic cloves into some cuts in the meat, before we applied the marinade. 400 degrees for 1st 20 min. to sear the meat and lock in moisture, then added a bunch of veggies and 2 cups of beef stock. Turned down to 325 degrees & cooked til the center reached 160. So easy to cook, and the leftovers made great sandwiches and even a soup.
Tomato sauce & bolognese is an easy favorite in my house. This technique is super simple, just a little time consuming. I tossed some rough chopped onions & garlic in olive oil and salt, then broiled them for about 10 minutes. Tossed everything in a pot along with one of the jarred tomato sauces I got from the CSA earlier this winter. Added a little more olive oil, salt, pepper, honey (help cut the acidity), fresh basil and parsley, then simmered on low for 2-3 hrs, stirring occasionally. After it cooled, I threw it in the cuisinart to chop it all up. I set a pint aside and froze it for another meal. The rest of it I threw back on the stove and added about 1/2 lb of ground turkey, gravy from the the rump roast and simmered it for another 1.5 hrs. As a different twist on spaghetti bolognese for my kid, I jullienned zucchini and a little bit of asparagus, sauteed it in a pan on high heat with butter, a few table spoons of chicken stock, salt/ pepper, then topped it off with the bolognese sauce. I thought it was delicious my my son, not so much. The rest of it I served as a hot veggie dish with olive oil.
The Stolzenberger Clan