Elmer Farm

Planning Around a CSA Pick-Up

CSA bouquetThe best part of my week?  Wandering down rows of flowers at Elmer Farm when I pick up my CSA share.  Flowers and herbs, cut as needed, are part of this CSA, and I really value it – especially on a dreary day like today.  My bouquet contains snapdragons, a stem of safflower (Carthamus), black-eye susan, amaranth, cleome, painted tongue (Salpiglossis), ageratum, and strawflowers.   


But let me not shortchange the beautiful veggies. I brought home enough mesclun salad mix for three salads, a head of frisee, one kohlrabi, a handful of purple-top turnips with their greens, a bunch of golden beets, two heads of red butter lettuce, and one fennel bulb.  Let the meal planning begin.


Still life with veggiesLast weeks’ tuna and white bean salad served on a bed of greens featured a shaved fennel bulb, and that was pretty wonderful.  I could repeat that, but maybe I’ll make a risotto with fennel and golden beets.  I’ll put the butter lettuce to use in Vietnamese spring rolls with shrimp, cellophane noodles and lots of fresh herbs.  The frisee will be wilted in bacon fat and used to bed down decadent supper of poached duck eggs and crisp bacon.

We love turnip greens and beet greens, so those will be lightly wilted and served one night or another.  That leaves only the turnips.


When I wrote Serving Up the Harvest 2007 I had not yet discovered the joys of turnips.  I found my way to turnips via roasting them and I expect I’ll roast the tunips and the kohlrabi.  Come to think of it, roasted beets, kohlrabi, and turnips on a bed of frisee, dressed with my Ripton House Dressing (see post June 22, 2012) would make a fine dinner.  Poached eggs – hen or duck – would not go amiss here.


So many choices.  So little time.