CSA Newsletter Week 21
Beauty and the Beet
Vegetables can be magical. Have you ever held brassica leaves under water and admired how the silver light shimmers across the edges? It looks like mercury. It’s always a pleasant surprise to come across an example of how beautiful food can be, whether as individual ingredients or as a complete dish. It’s not only nutrition that we get when we eat, but it’s an experience that includes the appearance of the food, the intention and feelings of our cook and company, and the atmosphere while we eat. We eat not only with our mouth, but with our eyes and heart as well.
Remember making mud cakes as a kid? I used to make mud cupcakes or pine needle tarts under the pine tree in my backyard and arrange tiny leaves, agates and pebbles to decorate the tops. It wasn’t nutritious, but I ate it with my eyes and felt good about it. There is something joyful about digging our fingers into the dirt. All of humanity has a strong need to have regular access to the outdoors. There really is something good and healing for us in the fresh air and the warmth of sunlight. We love to watch the birds diving in and out of seed-heavy bolted greens, to find earthworms in the soil, and to see honeybees on the sunflowers. We don’t list these things when we think of our basic survival needs, but I believe we need to have these things. Like love, they nourish us.
Just so, I believe the beauty and love associated with food affects its nourishing quality. The way we handle food reflects our relationships with each other. When my mama offers me food, she is saying she cares for me. For some reason, offering food feels different from offering other objects we also need, like shoes or a water bottle. I like to think the healing quality of nature is passed into them so they have the same inherent goodness as fresh air and sunlight. Is there something in vegetables that is loving? Maybe and maybe not, but they are certainly a good medium for expressing it!
Treviso Radicchio: I like to tear this raw into bite-size pieces. Shake together equal amounts of walnut oil and balsamic vinegar for a dressing, and top with crumbled chèvre and hot chopped bacon, or apples and nuts.
2 Poblanos, 1 Colored Pepper
Black Radish: Happy Halloween! We hope you’ll find this is a treat and not a trick. Spicy radishes are known to be great for healthy skin and a clear complexion. Toss a slice into a breakfast smoothie to give it a kick.
1 lb. Sunchokes: Store these in a closed container in the fridge so they won’t dry out. Puree for soup, mash, fry, or bake. When thinly sliced into a stir fry, they taste a bit like water chestnuts, and they’re also good on pizza.
Pie Pumpkin: This is also called “Sugar Pumpkin.” It is wonderfully sweet and ready to be made into a pie!
2 Storage Onions, 1 Cippolini
Lettuce, Carrots, Potatoes