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CSA Week 4: It’s Not Easy Having Greens

June 26, 2012 3 comments

Like mot things in life, I wish I had been more diligent in blogging my weekly CSA bundle. So far, it’s been an enjoyable challenge to come home with a bushel of food, mostly greens, and try to figure out a way to live on these that doesn’t require eating the same meal every day for a month. The trick is to not always insist on your CSA goodies taking center stage. Variety is the spice of life. Focus on the pork shoulder you find on sale that week, for instance, and let your veggies play a supporting role.

The first thing to do is to make a salad while everything is super fresh. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to plan your weekly meals in order of what needs the most cooking. The fresh lettuce, straight from the garden, will never taste as good as it does the day you pick it. Meanwhile, heartier kale can survive a longer wait.

For dinner on Sunday, the plan was to stir fry some greens with chicken sausage I picked up from Stop and Shop, and then toss it all with some pasta. That didn’t turn out so well, as the sausage decided to turn itself rancid. Luckily, Sunday was a nice day for a walk. Erin and I moseyed on down to the grocery store and exchanged the meat for a hunk of fresh mozzarella. On the way back we even stopped at a blues show in the park.

Greens and pasta is almost too easy, though. Sure, you can throw some random protein in there and call it a new dish, but after a while I starts to feel repetitive.

The following day we dined on carnitas. Bock choy added some crunch, but mostly it was a bit of a break. While living with limitations is an effective tool to get your creativity going, sometimes you just want something easy and greasy. Enter the carnitas.

Then today it was back to the drawing board. I have to say that I’m pretty proud of myself.

The end result is a Three Green and Sausage Casserole. It sounds very pot-luck, but it was simple and pretty darn tasty.

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The recipe, such as it is:

2 medium sized bunches of kale
1 bunch of bock choy
1 bunch Swiss chard (you can substitute almost any green)
1/2 lb sausage chunks
Bread crumbs, 1 handful
6 oz smoked gruyere
1 tomato

First, blanch the greens, shock them in some cold water, and wring them out. Cut the leaves into bite sized pieces. While those are cooking, brown up some sausage. Then cut up a tomato. Finally, mix the ingredients with some breadcrumbs and cheese in a casserole dish and pop into the oven at 350 until warmed through.

There are plenty of variations. Perhaps next time I’ll try ricotta instead of smoked gruyere. It would totally change the character of the dish. Which is fine. A technique is always more handy to have than a recipe.

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