And here we go, year three with the purveyors of pristine produce, Driftless Organics, week one out of 20. A full but not heavy box, as is common early in the season. What did we get?
STRAWBERRIES: Two pints. Small, vibrant, delicious. One pint gone already. These aren't being prepared. They don't need to be prepared. They need to be rinsed and eaten, and that's what's going on.
GARLIC SCAPES: Fuck yeah. A CSA without garlic scapes is a produce section at an Aldi. Five or six of them. Two are gone already - in a flash of brilliance, I charred them on the grill pan, chopped them into inch-long pieces, and used them as a taco topping. This works very, very well, but trim the skinny part first, because that'll just dry out and get touch. The thick part gets tender and glorious, though.
FRESH GARLIC: Three bulbs with long stems. Holy shit! That's a lot of garlic this early. And it's early enough that the stems aren't even tough. You can peel a couple of layers off them, chop them and toss them with roasting potatoes (did this already), grate some into a vinaigrette (ditto), or do other things (not yet).
ARUGULA: The traditional good sized bag. Most of this is gone - some went on hot dogs, more went into a dinner salad with lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, grilled chicken thighs, goat cheese, and pine nuts. And the abovementioned vinaigrette.
BLACK SPANISH RADISH: Fist-sized black radish in the first box? Goddamn. A tenth of it got chopped and put on the same taco the garlic scapes did. The rest awaits.
COLLARD GREENS: Will probably go with fresh garlic as a side dish for pork chops Tuesday or Wednesday. A healthy bunch.
BUTTERBALL POTATOES: Most of these are gone, roasted on the grill with the abovementioned garlic stems and the belowmentioned rosemary (spoilers!). Very nice, rich, potatoey flavor.
RED LEAF LETTUCE: One third in that dinner salad, two thirds left to go.
MINT: Sigh. The toughest herb for me to use - I'm not super-fond of it, or many of its traditional applications. And there was a lot of it. We'll see. I can't make enough tabouli to use it all.
ROSEMARY: I grow this myself, but it never hurts.
SPINACH: Another nice big bag. This is gonna go in a chicken curry tomorrow, because I've got lots of eating greens already, and spinach can be an eating green or a cooking green.
The box was supposed to have pea tendrils, but unless they're hiding atop the spinach in the bag, and I don't think they are, I missed out. No biggie. These things happen. Oh, and enjoy the taco I made after bringing the box home - grilled chili-rubbed steak topped with the last of my non-CSA lettuce, cucumbers, grilled garlic scapes, and radish. It needed a squeeze of lime, but I didn't have any. Otherwise delicious.