It finally feels like fall outside, maybe my favorite time of year. I always say that and then pause because it needs an explanation. The season, the weather, and the food that comes along with cooler weather, those are all my favorite things. Pumpkins…..just not my jam. So many people are surprised when I say this, but in all honesty, I think it is because they are associated with work and it’s like of like the last push of the season. Fall brings some chaos as our product offerings explode with so many different varieties and while we try to fulfill the fall orders, we are still trying to stay afloat with summer offerings too. So, it’s a little bit of a dichotomy. Give me all the fall things like football, tailgating, and comfort food, but I’ll leave the fall decorating and pumpkins for everyone else to enjoy.
The shares this week blend some summer highlights with the comfort of fall. With only 4 weeks of the CSA program left after this week, the transition to fall offerings has begun. We won’t take away summer, but there are some great fall offerings ready to be had as well. One of them being squash. You’ll get to experience many varieties over the next few weeks, so keep notes on which is your favorite so you can stock up for winter! Let’s check out the share this week:
Sweet Corn: At this time of year, my favorite thing to do with corn is to actually add it to soups or stir fry. I’ve had plenty of corn on the cob over the past few months, so now it’s time to get a little more creative. This Potato & Corn chowder also contains kale, so it is kind of a win-win for the share this week. Sometimes I will even add some sausage to it for a little extra protein boost. I use recipes as a guide, so remember you can always alter this and add extra vegetables you may have on hand.
Radishes: Roasted with a bit of olive oil and then sprinkled with a bit of salt and pepper is a great way to enjoy these if raw radishes aren’t your thing.
Kale: A little will be used for the corn chowder and the rest will be turned into sauteed kale or kale chips. Massed with a bit of olive oil and sprinkled with a bit of sea salt and tossed into the oven until just slightly crisp is my absolute favorite way to enjoy this leafy green. I know many people do not love the taste of kale, and if that’s the case, add it to smoothies or chop it finely and add it to soups or stews. The flavor is really mild and can be completely covered up when mixed with other vegetables.
Chub Cucumbers: Truth be told, I haven’t made a creamy cucumber salad all summer and that sounds delicious right about now. Thinly sliced, along with a couple of radishes and maybe even an onion I have sitting around, this recipe is super easy to throw together and enjoy on a weeknight or even for lunch one day.
Delicata Squash: Roasted is the easy way to enjoy squash. Cut in half, seeds removed, and baked is one way to enjoy this variety. Finish it off with a bit of butter and salt or brown sugar and you’re all set. Or, get a bit creative and find a stuffed squash recipe to enjoy. Truth be told, you can typically ‘stuff’ any variety of squash, so the important thing to consider when deciding on a recipe is: do you like the ingredients in the stuffing? The squash is just an added bonus.
Personal Watermelon: This will immediately go in my refrigerator when I get home tonight. Then tomorrow evening after dinner, I will cut it in half and enjoy half for dessert, while the other half will be enjoyed on Thursday. I’m convinced I could live on watermelon in the summer, but since I’m continuously told I should eat a variety of fruit of vegetables, I try to limit the consumption just a little bit.
Strawberries: Washed and sliced, these berries will be added to some yogurt or cottage cheese for morning or afternoon snacks. The flavor is outstanding and we know it won’t last that much longer, so enjoy them while you can!
Chestnut Crab Apples: The ultimate mini apple. I actually keep a couple at my desk and enjoy them as snacks throughout the day. I don’t normally eat an apple without cutting it, but these are different. While you can turn them into jelly or use them in recipes, I think they make the best snacks.
First Kiss Apples: Again, the ultimate snack. Apples and peanut butter are my go-to evening snack if I find myself hungry after dinner. I used to be a huge Zestar fan, but First Kiss has definitely over taken Zestar in my book because the flavor and texture is just so good.
Tomatoes: BLT’s are still on rotation in my house. They are usually a Friday night or weekend lunch option, which will be perfect because the tomatoes need to ripen a bit before you enjoy them. Otherwise, tacos, a fresh salad, or just sliced tomatoes are other great ways to enjoy these summertime treats.
And there you have it, week #13. The thought of cooking actually sounds a bit more enjoyable now that the temperatures have cooled down a bit. While my week is a bit crazy, I hope to set just a little bit of time aside to get through the share this week and hope you can do the same.