10 November 2010

CSA bounties

At some point in October, I convinced myself that Colby and I wouldn't go out to eat for the month of November. This lasted all of one day because I forgot to bring a lunch on November 2nd. Then, I decided that we wouldn't go out to eat for *dinner* during all of November. This lasted until last Saturday, because there was a pizza place that I just *had* to try. (It was good, not great, but I prefer Chicago-style pizza to thin crust.) Yesterday we resumed our Central-Market-Cafe-dinner-with-grocery-shopping-Sunday ritual and I disabused myself of all notions that this "no eating out in November" thing had any traction left.

Part of the reason I even wanted to try this was because we joined a community supported agriculture (CSA) and it seemed like a really great way to support local farms, eat fresh foods, and try new foods that we never even thought about buying at the grocery store. The first delivery included green beans, green peppers, spring mix, cabbage, zucchini, green onions, butternut squash, sweet corn, turnip greens, oranges, and a grapefruit that looked like the Freakonomics apple/orange.

The first meal we ate with the CSA goodies was grilled steak with sauteed turnip greens, mashed butternut squash, and roasted corn. It was terribly delicious and everything was super fresh. I've never cooked turnip greens, but found them to be incredibly bitter. I sauteed them in bacon drippings, with spring onions, garlic, and some tomato and those helped to cut the bitterness, though not completetly. The corn was great and the butternut squash was awesome. I'm definitely looking forward to future CSA bushels. The head of napa cabbage we got was so green that I didn't recognize it as such, so I treated it like normal green cabbage and cooked up a really awesome side dish for dinner last night.

Really Awesome Cabbage Side Dish for Dinner Last Night
1 head napa cabbage, washed of all grit and roughly chopped
2 jalapeños, seeded and minced
1/2 small onion, diced
3-4 cloves garlic, crushed or finely minced
2 T extra virgin olive oil (or some other fat, I actually used chicken schmaltz)
s+p, to taste

Bring a pot of salted water to boil in a large stock pot. Boil cabbage leaves for ~6 minutes or so and then drain cabbage.

In a sauté pan, heat up evoo (or whatever fat you're using), add a pinch of salt and cook the onion and jalapeño until the onion is translucent and soft, about 5 minutes.

Stir in the garlic for about 30 seconds or until fragrant, careful not to burn.

Add in the cabbage and stock and cook until most of the liquid has boiled away.

Taste and season with salt and pepper.

This is awesome and garlicky and even better the second day. I think it'd be really good served atop polenta.

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