This week's bounty: Banana peppers - Costata Romanesca zucchini - Fairytale eggplants - Green beans - Purple carrots - Red tomatoes. The recipes outlined below can be found on my Pinterest site; select the board entitled CSA_Recipes_2017.
It's currently 93 degrees and very humid in Philadelphia at 7:50 pm. I can't believe it, but I am going to make a spicy Indian dish with my banana peppers called Dahi Mirchi Salan (peppers in yogurt) from Masala Chronicles. It's a good thing that my air conditioner is working. When I was searching for things to do with my peppers, most of the recipes were pickled or included other processed foods. I used to drive to several different stores to find all of the ingredients I needed for Indian recipes until I found the International Foods and Spices Store on Market Street between 42nd and 43rd streets. This place is great. It is the only place I have been able to find fresh curry leaves.
I'm excited to use a new gadget: a spiralizer. I have always used a knife, mandolin, or food processor to prep my veggies. I will be making raw squash noodles with lemon-basil cashew cream sauce from Vegenista.
I love eggplant. My husband hates it. Lucky for me...I get to eat it all. Most of the time, I grill it or make Baba Ganoush, but this week I will be making pickled Fairytale eggplant from Marissa McClellan's Preserving by the Pint. I interviewed Marissa for my podcast. The interview will go live next month, so checkout the link above to my podcast if you are interested in learning more about her or about preserving the bounty of your CSA share.
As for the red tomatoes, green beans, and carrots, not much work is required. When it is really hot in the city, I love to just make a platter of cold salads, good bread, cheese, olives, or and/or fruit. Most of the time, tomatoes in my house are eaten with drizzle of Claudio's extra virgin olive oil (from the Italian Market) and a little salt, often with mozzarella or ricotta cheese on toast made with stone ground grains. Right now, my favorite bread is the Anadama bread from High Street Market. I will be interviewing Andrew Farley, one of their bread makers, this week for my podcast, so stay tuned.
Green beans are great just blanched and eaten plain. I blanch them for approximately 3 minutes, run them under cold water, and then refrigerate them. That way, I can quickly pull them from the fridge at any time for a snack. When you cook them fresh from the vine, they are like candy. If that's too plain for you, drizzle some olive oil and lemon on them with salt and pepper to dress them up.
Don't throw away your carrot tops. Even though they are rough, they can be used to make basil. This week, I am going to make carrot basal pesto from Eat Boutique. The carrots themselves will not last long in my refrigerator since my husband loves them.
Between the sweet red tomatoes, green beans and carrots, who needs dessert, eh? Not! I'm sure I will work in some good dark chocolate along the way somewhere. As for the minimal scraps from preparation, they will be fed to my boys downstairs (i.e., the worms in my composting bin).