Let’s talk CSA. Are you a member? All I know is that every other Tuesday, when I wake up in the morning, it’s like Christmas. There’s a box on my doorstep filled with a plethora of mystery goodies and I’m giddy like a 15-year-old girl at a Justin Bieber concert. Actually not gonna lie, I would be giddy at a Biebs concert. WHO WOULDN’T? So it’s Tuesday morning and here’s what I’m thinking: What will be inside the box this time? What recipes will I make with it? How many items can I properly identify? Kyle, will you go outside and get the box this time because my feet are cold?
It’s all so exciting! I love my CSA program because they deliver it to me in the middle of the night. I don’t have to go to anywhere to pick it up. Some may call that lazy, others may call it genius. Either way, I’m getting a box o’ veggies & fruit every other week and it’s changing my life. Here’s why:
+ The veggies/fruit are all organic and from local farms.
+ The produce is always seasonal. Right now, I’m getting lots of squash, apples, and greens.
+ It’s fairly cheap. I pay $25 for a small mixed box (that includes delivery) and it comes every other week. I easily spend that much on produce every week so ehhh not too bad?
+ It’s a LOT of stuff for 2 people. We pretty much gorge ourselves (Kyle and I) on healthy foods for the week that we get it. We’re talking veggie-centric meals every night and then a fruit cobbler for dessert. On the weeks we don’t get the box, I’m not going to tell you the crap we eat but it may rhyme with braft lacaroni & schmeese.
+ It really pushes me to try new foods and new recipes, which I love! For example, there is an acorn squash in the box I got this week and I can’t wait to make this with it.
My CSA program is called Farm Fresh to You and I have nothing but praise for them. If you’re in the LA or Southern California area, I would highly recommend. DO IT.
BRB, going to eat 5 pears.
I wanted to make zucchini bread…and then realized I don’t own a loaf pan. This realization came about after I gathered all the ingredients, shredded zucchini, mixed everything together, turned on the oven, etc. You’re probably thinking “Wow, this chick ain’t real smart” OR “Who doesn’t own a loaf pan in the year 2011?” and I would agree with you on both accounts. But the kicker is that I used to own a loaf pan. It up and disappeared.
So I decided to turn my zucchini bread into zucchini muffins. Thankfully, baker extraordinaire, Kim, told me it was a-ok to do so! Also, once I actually read the details of the recipe, I realized that it gives you the options of making muffins. Ouy vey, all that stress for nothing.
Speaking of the recipe, I love using Punchfork to find recipes. It’s a great tool because it only searches on food blogs and food websites, rather than the entire interwebs. The recipe I used for zucchini bread/muffins is this Smitten Kitchen one found via Punchfork. They turned out moist and extra cinnamon-y and I would make them a thousand more times. Plus, the simple fact that there’s a vegetable in it makes me think they’re nice and healthy. I could be very wrong in this assumption but nonetheless, they’re a perfectly delicious fall snack.
Happy Spring! Though I’d prefer to celebrate the new season with outdoor picnics and trips to the farmer’s market, our current weather situation (what is this rain thing that’s happening?) is preventing me from doing any such activities. Instead, I’ve been watching lots of American Pickers on TV, eating handfuls of Cadbury chocolate eggs, and catching up on the April issue of Cooking Light.
When I came across this Cooking Light risotto recipe, I knew it would be a perfect way to kick off the spring season (bad weather or not). First of all, it showcases asparagus (a spring vegetable) and I’m all for seasonal cooking. Not only are veggies much cheaper when they’re in season, they’re also much tastier (I might just be imagining that they’re tastier, who knows). Second of all, risotto is just plain delicious.
And this risotto was no exception! I loved that it wasn’t super heavy but still had all the rich flavors of a classic risotto. And the edamame/asparagus combo was like an added bonus point. Speaking of bonus points, you have to stir risotto constantly for atleast 20 minutes so you’re getting a really nice arm workout in the process. Overall, the finished product, with it’s creamy texture and flavorful bite, was a real crowd-pleaser.
PS- Looky looky what I found at Trader Joe’s for $3.99?? Ranunculus!! My favorite ever.
Before I start bragging about my pear tart (because let’s face it, it was my first time and it turned out like a champion tart), I need to confess my sins. I committed TWO crimes in tart-baking world. 1) I used an apple tart recipe and…gasp…USED PEARS INSTEAD. 2) I altered the recipe (is this legal?) and added cinnamon…like LOADS of it. I went against all types of baker’s code! For shame!
Ok now that I got that out of the way, let’s move forward. For as much as I bake, I’m really not that good at it. Half of my baked goods are total failures and the other half are semi-decent. But for some reason this tart was a real gem. It might be because the ingredients were so simple or that the recipe was so straightforward – either way, I didn’t F it up so I deserve some brownie points (preferably in the form of Girl Scout Thin Mints, I’m accepting all deliveries at my house, a-thank you).
The tart crust was buttery and golden and the pears had a juicy bite to them. Not too sweet, not too heavy. And dare I say the cinnamon was a perfect addition?? I swear, everything is better with cinnamon.
I loved this tart so much that I plan on baking it again real soon. And who knows, maybe next time I’ll bake it with apples! View the recipe, found on Smitten Kitchen, here.
Normally, I’m pretty good about making all sorts of Halloween treats. This year, I was a major slacker. Shameful. But I did end up making one treat, Pumpkin Whoopie Pies (recipe here).
They weren’t my favorite pumpkin dessert – i.e. I’d much rather have pumpkin pie or pumpkin chocolate chip cookies – but they were still pretty decent. The chocolate cookie was so cakey and the pumpkin center could double as a frosting. You really can’t go wrong with that combo.
P.S. What was your Halloween costume? I dressed as Rachel Berry from Glee, complete with a pleated skirt, white polka dot socks, and a cropped cardigan. The only thing I didn’t have was the voice!!!