C.S.A. Newsletter Week 7
Sometimes I like to pull a raw vegetable out of the crisper drawer and eat it as if it is an apple, maybe dipped into some yogurt, nut butter or pesto. I do this with cucumbers, carrots, squash, pepper, turnips, you name it. And at other times, my food to-do list can become rather complicated, and span multiple days. For example, I might have to soak almonds on Wednesday night so I can make almond milk Thursday morning so I can make pancake batter Thursday night so I can make pancakes Friday morning. But as many of you already know, that sort of attention to food detail pretty much goes out the window when you’re caring for children.
The other day while washing carrots, I was brainstorming what foods I wanted to make for my little brother and sister who are coming for a sleepover at my place this week, and it occurred to me that the experience of cooking changes a lot depending on whether you are cooking for yourself, for children, or for other adults.
When my little ones are around, I like to keep things a little simpler; the PB bowl starts looking more appealing than the almond milk. They are nine and twelve, which is a fun age because they can help put their food together. My favorite way to cook with them is to prepare a foundation and toppings, and then let them decide what toppings they want on their foundation. For example, a foundation might be a tortilla, pan-fried polenta, rice, pasta, or bread. “Toppings” might be a pot of cooked beans, and some tomato, cheese and avocado still on the cutting board, or a pan of roasted vegetables and a bowl of pesto. My favorite is “gizza skizza,” a creative take on pizza invented by chef Laura Pensiero. I’m afraid I don’t remember the story of how these flatbread pizzas got their funny name… the main thing that stuck with me was how tasty they are! For dough, we use flatbread. Toppings vary from the familiar (pesto), to the adventurous (baba ganoush and crushed red pepper). I love seeing CSA members who come with their kids to get their box… I’m thinking this week’s box would make some great gizza skizzas!
2 lb. Potatoes
Leeks: The whole leek is edible, but the white stem is most tender. Trim off the roots and rinse to get any dirt out from between the layers. Slice down the length of the white part and then cut into cross-sections before cooking.
Globe Eggplant The simplest way to prepare an eggplant is to slice it into very thin slices, brush with oil on both sides, sprinkle with salt, and smoked paprika, and then roast or stir fry it until it’s a nice balance of chewy and crisp. These are tasty right out of the pan, but you can make a dinner out of it by serving it with bread toasted with fontina, topped with fresh tomato.
Poblano: I like to stir-fry a diced poblano with red kidney beans, sliced onion and salt, and wrap it up in a tortilla with eggs or sausage for breakfast.