Using a CSA

So, I’ve been getting a CSA box for many months now. And I love it. I didn’t realize how much I loved it until we took a few weeks off in the summer because the girl I split it with was gone a few weeks and then I was gone a few weeks, etc.

I make a big effort to waste as little of the food as possible and sometimes that’s a little tricky because 1) it’s a lot of produce and 2) sometimes it’s not stuff we eat on a normal basis. But hey, this week was extremely successful, so I’ll share how we used it up.

Here’s what we got in the box last week:

Winter Squash
Hot and Sweet Peppers
Sweet Potato Greens
Bok Choi

And. . . here’s how I used it (you care! I know you care!)

  • Winter Squash – I cubed the butternut and acorn squash, tossed them in a pan with a little olive oil and taco seasoning and roasted it for a while. Easy side dish.
  • Hot and Sweet Peppers – Bart and I both aren’t enormous fans of peppers, so it’s a little tricky to use them up, but I try and squeeze them in. I made jalapeno dip for a baby shower, I diced them up super tiny for this Citrus Beans dish, and I whirled them in the food processor for this taco meat
  • Eggplant – I made eggplant parmesan again, but this time I didn’t bake it all together in a casserole dish, but instead made ciabatta bread and we had eggplant sandwiches (they were tasty, although Bart and I agreed we should have had tomato sauce on them in addition to slices of tomatoes).
  • Zucchini – this zucchini pizza which, I swear, is the best pizza I’ve ever had. Bart agrees.
  • Sweet Potato Greens – I used these instead of spinach in this Hot Spinach Dip.
  • Bok Choi – This is not my favorite vegetable, so I made this taco meat with it. Frankly, this wasn’t my most favorite taco meat ever, but it wasn’t bad. It was quite a bit better the second day as leftovers.
  • Basil – I made a big batch of pesto (using half almonds and half pine nuts), froze it in ice cube trays and tossed all the pesto cubes in a ziplock bag. Cheap pesto all winter!
  • Melon – sliced up and eaten as a sidedish.
  • Onions – If you don’t know what to do with an onion, this isn’t the blog for you.

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  • Reply Kelly J. September 22, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    I love that we're doing a CSA too, but I'm not as good about not being wasteful (which I suppose will change out of need soon). I also just got a huge batch of arugula, and I think I'm going to make up a batch of pesto with it, then steal your idea of freezing it in ice cube trays. How smart!

  • Reply bethany September 22, 2011 at 12:42 pm

    I run the Bountiful Baskets site down here in Houston (a co-op as well, but no subscription), and I LOVE it as well. It absolutely makes us eat healthier because the produce is already at our house!!

  • Reply Reading (and chickens) September 22, 2011 at 1:27 pm

    I've been failing a bit with our CSA box. This is a good boost to use up our veggies. I love it but sometimes I'm just like, vegetables, really? do I have to? Basically my inner six-year-old was out this summer, which my outer six-year-old liked very much.

  • Reply Elsha September 22, 2011 at 3:30 pm

    I love the onion comment because yes. There is so much to do with onion. When we run out I always get more, even if I haven't planned meals yet because I can ALWAYS use onion.

  • Reply Lexilooo September 22, 2011 at 3:53 pm

    I really want to get a CSA box, but am apprehensive, as there are many veggies that Steve won't eat…

  • Reply craftyashley September 22, 2011 at 4:22 pm

    Yeah, but I like cooking things normal people will like. LOL

  • Reply Lisa September 22, 2011 at 4:28 pm

    Same with the onions here. I feel like I'd be able to use up a box, I'm really good at using every last bit of something. I'd find it an enjoyable challenge.

  • Reply heidikins September 22, 2011 at 5:12 pm

    I can't wait to get a CSA box…as a single girl it's impossible to use it all. No one should get a box of produce when she is the kind of girl who buys carrots and celery individually instead of in a bag. Sigh. One day!

    (Also, your onion comment is classic.)


  • Reply Jill September 22, 2011 at 6:33 pm

    If you ever happened to magically show up in my kitchen and you accidentally cooked or baked anything, I would not be disappointed.

  • Reply Emily Kate September 22, 2011 at 6:44 pm

    I am jealous that Bart is so open to trying whatever you want to make. Jacob will eat it but sometimes not much and won't touch the leftovers if it's something he doesn't love (aka something without meat.) I would love to join a CSA but I can't even get him on board with Bountiful Baskets. He didn't think our first one was very impressive and has had a bad attitude about them ever since. Boo. But thanks for sharing your ideas. Maybe slowly I can turn him around!

  • Reply Creole Wisdom September 22, 2011 at 6:46 pm

    I'm thinking of splitting one of these with a person in my new apt building. I really want to try it out.

    Thanks for sharing how you used up your stash!

    The pizza does sound good 🙂

  • Reply Carly September 24, 2011 at 6:37 pm

    So yes, I do know what to do with an onion (although to be honest, I usually use a cut a recipe's suggestion amount by a half to a third…) but what do I do with six HUGE onions… two of which are about to go bad? I'm think either caramelize or roast (as that is my favorite way to get rid of that too-much-onion-y-ness)… but do you have a suggested recipe to try?

    Sometimes i wish I did a CSA instead of bountiful baskets because of the vegetable side of the basket is often lacking in variety and excitement. But I love oh so much the fruit side that I don't know if I could ever switch!

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