« Food & Drinks

Tales of a Virgin CSA Member

by Amy Iler

I'm a proud new member of a CSA (Community Shared Agriculture).  If you are not familiar  with such a program, as members (or subscribers), we pay a flat fee at the beginning of a growing season and we share the produce!  If you are a vegetable eater (which we all should be) and you take pride in eating locally grown, check out one near you! 

Here's what I found in my first bag: lettuce, cucumbers, carrots, sage, and kale.  Kale?! I'll admit it, I've never bought kale because I didn't know what to do with it!  So, I tired the only thing I could think of:  bake it!  And, it was delicious.  (I've probably heard about this method in some magazine, or blog... but I can't remember who to credit.)  

Baked Kale:

Cut out the center vine (I don't know what else it's called), cut into small pieces, lightly coat with olive oil, lay out on baking sheet and lightly sprinkle salt over before baking. 

Throw in the oven at 275 degrees for about 20 minutes, flip all the kale and finish baking for another 20 minutes. 

Waa-lah!  You have a delicious (and crunchy!) healthy snack. 

The first time I made these, my husband and I devoured the entire sheet. They won't be crunchy enough to pick up salsa, but you won't need to.  I look forward to trying these again - with maybe a few new seasonings.  

Kale will now move from my "veggies I don't know what to do with" list.  Please tell me I'm not the only one with this list! 

One more idea:    

With an abundance of veggies in the refridgerator drawers, I have not wanted anything to go to waste.  So, my husband came up with a "everything goes" approach to our CSA veggies and it's been great!

We cut up every veggie available (onion, potato, pepper, zucchini, cabbage, kale, etc.) - along with a meat (chicken, sausage, turkey sausage, etc) - throw it in a sauce pan with some olive oil and seasonings and "wah-lah!" you have dinner!  

If you really want to spice it up, take it off the heat, add a little salad dressing and throw it on a toasted bun!  Or, cut up some of your fresh tomatoes and throw those on top. 

As you can tell, I'm not getting my own cooking show anytime soon.  This is not rocket science... but sometimes we have to remind ourselves eating well is easy!  

Let's enjoy the veggie season while it lasts!