24 May 2009

First Share Pickup

We've been putting it off for years. Either we were too busy or we didn't enroll in time - we never got around to buying a CSA share until this year. We've been talking about it for quite some time; but it took a fit of passion to actually get us enrolled this year.

The fit of passion was sparked by reading Barbara Kingsolver's Animal, Vegetable, MIracle earlier this year. I walked into the school library and there it was - it's lovely green cover calling out to me. I had just listened to a podcast of an episode of The Splendid Table that had an interview with Kingsolver, so the compulsion to pick up the book was strong. I read it in less than a week and became obsessessed with eating locally.

J wants to kill me for reading this book. I admit, my tendency to become obsessive can be truly annoying, so I don't completely blame him. Maybe it's my refusal to eat bananas. Maybe it's the fact that I don't talk about much besides eating local. Maybe its the FORTUNE I've spent on garden supplies so far this year. Maybe it's all of the above. He'll eat well this summer, so I don't feel too bad about it.

I decided to buy a Mega share from Garden of Eve, an organic farm in Riverhead about 20 minutes away from our house. We've shopped for produce there in the past, so I was excited when a Google search revealed that GoE offered CSA shares. The Mega share includes a vegetable share, a fruit share (not organic, but from a neighboring low-spray farm), an egg share (organically fed free-range hens), and a flower share (J doesn't see the need for this, but I'm a sucker for flowers).

Our first pick up was yesterday (05.23.09). We were running errands all day, so we made it just before the farm closed up for the evening. We ran inside, grabbed a bag (we'll bring our own bag next time), walked into the cooler, and picked up our stuff. Here's what we got:

Veggie share:
1/2 lb spinach
1 bu onions or leeks
1 stalk green garlic
1 bu or bag kale
1 lb local non-organic asparagus
1/2 lb pea shoots
1/2 dozen eggs

Fruit share:
6 lbs apples

Flower share:
potted sunflowers and a plant of our choice (I chose an heirloom Green Zebra tomato plant)

Last night I chopped up three of the apples and added them to a giant batch of sangria I made for a friend's party today. The apples are tart, sweet, and crisp. I'm thinking of cooking some down into apple sauce and maybe baking a few apple dumplings (have I mentioned that J has a sweet tooth and wants sweet things for breakfast all of the time?).

This morning I cleaned about a third of the spinach (lots of rinsing and removing of stems) and sauteed it with some Vidalia onion and garlic. I cracked some of the amazingly fresh eggs into the pan and let the eggs cook nestled into the spinach sautee. The yolks were so rich and particularly tasty as a "dressing" for the spinach.

For dinner tonight I cleaned the rest of the spinach and the kale and sauteed them with the young onions and garlic and some more Vidalia onion. I stuffed it into a delicious hollowed-out Italian boule from a Brooklyn bakery and guilded the lily with some buffalo milk mozzarella. I popped everything into the oven to meld together and managed to burn myself on the cookie sheet while taking my mondo sandwich out of the blazing hot oven. The giant blister and its accompanying pain are worth it because this sandwich is GOOD! Yum! Yum! Yum!

I should have taken pictures of everything, but I got so carried away in all of the excitement that I just plain forgot. I'll be better about that from now on.

I've got the pea shoots and asparagus in the fridge still, and lots of eggs left (since we got an extra half dozen this week). I'm thinking about soft-boiled eggs with asparagus spears for breakfast tomorrow. I'll have to contemplate a use for the pea shoots. Hmm...

Okay, my burn is finally calming down so I'm going to sneak into the kitchen for a sliver of my rockin' sauteed greens pannini. Don't tell J!

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