You’ve made the decision to support local agriculture.
You’re feeding your family farm-fresh, organically grown produce by joining a community supported agriculture program (CSA) in which you pay a fee at the beginning of a season and receive a box of produce each week from a local farm.
Now the question is: what the heck should you do with that big box of eggplant, arugula, cabbage, beets, zucchini, cucumber, and of course, ripe red tomatoes? And, those are just the well-known veggies you’ll find in your CSA delivery. Less common summer vegetables like Russian kale, mustard greens and Swiss chard can be even more difficult to work into your menus.
“When you get a CSA box, there is something in it you may not have tried,” Sweet Earth Organic Farm and CSA operator Renee Randall says. “You get things you wouldn’t have picked up in the produce department.”
Instead of letting all that produce spoil in your fridge, Randall encourages people to savor the simplicity of the summer harvest. Because CSA veggies are fresher than the ones you’ll find at the supermarket, Randall says you may find a splash of olive oil and some garlic is all the seasoning they need.
You can also blanch and freeze greens and can tomatoes for use later in the year. Or, grab your cutting board and try one of Randall’s veggie-centric summer recipes below.