Last Thursday afternoon I visited New City Urban Farm to pick up a CSA share where I was greeted with a smile from Rileigh Haan, New City’s manager of customer service. She helped me put together a share and gave me a newsletter with information on the happenings at the farm along with tips, tricks, and recipes to use with the share. This week’s share included carrots, beets, kale, tomatoes, eggplant, summer squash, zucchini, broccoli, and scallions. Clearly exemplifying the agricultural abundance that Michigan summers can offer, I had no shortage of ideas for dishes that I could experiment with.
I started by cooking up a huge veggie hash using scallions, carrots, beets, squash, zucchini, kale, broccoli, and tomatoes. This recipe was perfect for a late Saturday morning breakfast for two. Next I made roasted ratatouille toasts using eggplant, zucchini, squash, scallions, beets, and tomatoes from the share. For this dish I bought a loaf of Field and Fire’s levain bread for the toasts, used oregano from Mud Lake Farms, corn from Versluis farms, and garlic from the Sustainable Agriculture Project at GVSU. To accompany the toasts, I made my favorite kale salad recipe adding broccoli to it for the first time. The broccoli made the salad more hearty and gave it more texture and flavor. I finished off the remaining zucchini in a vegan zucchini bread, the perfect dessert to top off the meal.
I made a lot of substitutions with ingredients in these dishes, i.e. subbing beets for potatoes, scallions for onions, and kale for chard. When using CSA shares, substitutions are not only welcomed but encouraged. Substitutions allow you to to best use your full share and get creative with your cooking. Overall, I enjoyed these recipes and would definitely use them again in the feature. My share from New City Urban Farm helped me to cook healthy, local meals for the week and encouraged me to invite friends over to celebrate and appreciate delicious food together.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add some of the oil (you might need to add more later if the veggies stick), and heat until shimmering. Add the onion and carrots. Season with a little salt and pepper. Cook until they start to soften a little, 2-3 minutes. Add the beets and season well with salt and pepper. Continue cooking, lowering heat as necessary, until the beets are almost tender. Add the squash and continue cooking, stirring frequently with a metal spatula. Add the garlic and the kale. Continue cooking until all the vegetables are tender. Season again with salt and pepper. Fry an egg to put on top of each serving. Enjoy!
Recipe adapted from Cafe Johnsonia
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Arrange the eggplant on a few paper towels. Sprinkle with salt and let sit for 15 minutes. Once you see little beads of water all over, pat them dry. Arrange all the vegetables and herbs on a rimmed baking sheet. Toss with 2 Tbs. oil and a nice pinch of salt and pepper. Roast for 30 minutes. Toss the veggies at the 20-minute mark. In the meantime, brush the bread with 2 Tbs. oil and sprinkle with garlic salt. Toast until golden brown. In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining 2 Tbs. oil and a Tbs. of balsamic vinegar. Top each toast with the ratatouille vegetables and garnish with any fresh herbs you did and a nice little drizzle of balsamic.
Recipe adapted from Bev Cooks
Wash the kale in cold water, pat dry, trim off the tough portions of the stems and discard them. Chop the kale into bite-size pieces and place in a large salad bowl. Chop broccoli into bite sized pieces and set aside. Combine vinegar, oil, brown sugar, garlic, Bragg Liquid Aminos or soy sauce and red pepper flakes in a saute pan. Simmer the mixture over moderate heat for 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove pan from heat and immediately pour the hot mixture over the kale and broccoli; mix well to thoroughly coat all of the leaves with dressing. Allow kale to sit for 10 minutes or more before serving.
Recipe adapted from Green Vegetarian Cuisine
Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour an 8×4-inch or 9×5-inch loaf pan. Set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and spices. Set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together almond milk, vegetable oil, vanilla extract, and sugars. Shred the zucchini using a grater and squeeze it over a strainer to release some of the liquid. Whisk thoroughly, then add the shredded zucchini and almonds. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and fold together with a spatula. Make sure all of the flour is thoroughly incorporated into the batter. Spoon batter into prepared pan, sprinkle the top with sliced almonds and place in the oven. Bake for about 1 hour, or until a skewer inserted into the center of the bread comes out clean. Allow to cool in pan for 20 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack to cool completely. Bread will last, well wrapped at room temperature, for up to 5 days.
Recipe courtesy of The Forest Feast