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CSA Box Challenge

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Today our CSA box came. As you already know, that makes for a great day at Casa West, but now my challenge is to figure out what I’m gonna make with all the goodness. This is what I have to work with:

Picture of CSA Box ingredients

CSA box goodness: Garnet sweet potatoes, gravenstein apples, eureka lemon, shishito peppers, red plums, sweet peppers, zucchini, globe eggplant, bi-color corn, beets, and leaf lettuce. Not shown: cantaloupe.

Our household is not a big fan of beets, but I think that might be because we’ve never had good ones. The pickled beets of my childhood have permanently prejudiced me against this vegetable but since I’m willing to give the ones I got today a chance.

A quick Internet search turned up many delicious sounding beet recipes, but the best ones required roasting. We are in the middle of a heat wave here in Venice so turning on the oven is not going to happen this week. Instead I looked for a recipe that called for a different method of preparation and found this one from Lisa’s Kitchen:

Beet and Feta Salad

I also found this recipe for a Beetroot and Sweet Potato Tart on the Tasty Kitchen blog. Despite the baking requirement, I’m so tempted to make it because it uses two of my ingredients, beets and sweet potatoes, and it seems like it would be delicious–though decidedly different than most of the fare that hits our table. I’ll keep you posted on this one.

Picture of shishito peppers

shishito peppers

Now I have a confession to make. I’ve never heard of shishito peppers. However, they reminded me very much of Spanish pimientos de padron and I figured I’d probably be flash frying them. Sure enough, one of the first recipes I turned up was for none other than flash fried shishito peppers. This recipe takes care of the lemon, too.

Picture of sweet pepper

Sweet pepper

I’m not sure what the specific name of these peppers are, but a quick taste revealed them to be similar in flavor to pasilla peppers, which are one of my favorite types. Usually I sautee pasillas and add them to various other recipes, like quesadillas. I’ll probably do that with these, except I found this recipe and I’m tempted to try it:

Chiles Rellenos Jose

Of course with this recipe you’ve still got the oven problem, but I’m so tempted to try it. It just looks too delicious.

The other items, zucchini, corn, apples, and plums, are kind of no-brainers. I’ll probably have a bbq later in the week and grill the corn and zucchinis and the apples and plums will be eaten straight out of the fridge. Or I might do a “kitchen sink” type salad and just throw the corn and zucchini together with the leaf lettuce and mix up a unique vinaigrette to go with.

Picture of eggplant


What about that gorgeous eggplant? Lately I’ve been roasting them for sandwiches, but I think this time around I’ll make a batch of my baba ganoosh.

Depending on what I make I’ll be reporting back during the week. Wishing you lots of good eating!

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