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CSA Box Week 11: Tips, Tricks and Ideas

Posted 8/29/2017 3:27am by Jenna Untiedt.

For many of you this is the last week of summer with the kids at home. The thought of starting school next week is both a dreaded and welcomed thought. The calendar flipping to September later this week is almost like an automatic sign that fall is here. The State Fair is upon us, almost like an automatic gateway from summer to fall. Even with all these signs of fall, there is still plenty of summer offerings to be enjoy in the shares. 

The end of August and the month of September is truly one of the best times to be a CSA member. The convergence of seasons offers a wide variety of produce and usually cooler temperatures makes us want to cook a bit more. This is a great combination which should leave us all happy. 

Let's get down to what the share has to offer this week:

Sweet Corn: Here you have it, the same corn as we are sending to the Minnesota State Fair Corn Roast. Enjoy it boiled, grilled, or in chowder. Under the leek section, I am included a fantastic chowder recipe that includes sweet corn.....it was absolutely delicious and a breeze to make. 

Slicing Tomatoes: BLT's, toppings for burgers, or fresh pasta sauce...so many offerings. Even if you can't get to them all this week. Quickly freeze them by slicing in half, placing on a cookie sheet in the freezer. Once frozen put into a ziploc bag, label, and enjoy is soups or stews this winter. 

Grape Tomatoes: The best finger food snack around. By leaving these on my counter, they have become a quick go to snack. Also, they make a great salad topping throughout the week. Enjoy them while you can. 

Onions: Don't be afraid to keep these for a while. No need to use them right away. Store in a cool, dark place. If you are ready to use them, they make great fried onions to top your burger. 

Potatoes: Last night I made a potato, corn, and leek chowder. Eat was easy and delicious. These potatoes make the perfect addition to the chowder, and the chowder will make great leftovers. Any meals I have prep in less than 30 minutes is a winner in my books. If chowder isn't your thing, try a potato salad for your Labor Day weekend gathering. 

Kale: Every time I make kale at my parents house, my mother just cringes. Me on the other hand, I could eat it every day. Toss with a bit of olive oil and bake. Eat it soft or let it get crispy. This truly has great flavor. 

Leek: Yes, there is only one right now, but it is huge. Here is the recipe for Corn, Potato, Leek chowder I have talked about. If you are new to leeks, they have the most subtle onion flavor. The best part about this recipe is you can use the white and green portion of the leek so you don't waste any of it. If chowder doesn't sound appealing to you, try just sauteing the leek and enjoying on top of burgers or another type of sandwich. 

Zucchini: With the cool weather, zucchini bread is in the plans for this week. I need to find an evening where im home before bedtime, but this will definitely take place. If you are having a hard time using up your zucchini you can always freeze it. Shred it and place into a storage bag. Label with the quantity so you know for future use. It is great to use in breads later or add to soup in the winter. 

Apples: Zestar! apples again. Soon we will be moving on to a new variety so enjoy these while you can. They make great afternoon snacks. If you are feeling ambitious, you can always try apple crisp, but I think ill save the crisp making until we are into some other varieties. 

Red Radishes: Im not a huge radish lover, but I don't mind them in stir fry. This is a great way to hide them from kids while ensuring they are getting some extra veggies in. Just slice thin and add to all the other vegetables you are using. The taste is extremely subtle, so most people won't even realize they are there. 

Black Radishes: These weren't my favorite at first, but they are growing on me. You can cook these like any other root vegetable. Roasting them is how I first tried them. Black Radish Chips is how I managed to be more open to them. The chips are thin and get a bit crunchy....they have a lot of flavor, and it is a flavor I think you will either love or hate. Give them a try, isn't that what a CSA is all about? 

There you have it, hopefully a few ideas to help you through the box this week. A couple new things to try and hopefully enjoy. As the month of August comes to a close, enjoy the last few days of summer. Most of you will have a long weekend coming up, enjoy it and use it to get outdoors. It's truly amazing how fast this summer has gone. To think we only have 6 weeks left of the CSA is kind of scary. I mean, I can't wait until I can spend Monday nights at my own house again and now wake up at 2:30am, but in all actuality the season has gone incredibly fast. I truly hope you are enjoying your experience with the CSA and it is expanding your tastes just a bit. Have a great week!