Saturday, February 13, 2010

CSA week ten wrap-up, week 11 start-up

There are a few items unaccounted for this week.

The baby arugula, disappointingly, was partly rotten straight from the box. I tried to pick out the good leaves but the rot was mixed through and I ended up tossing the lot. I had similar issues with the cilantro, but there I was able to toss the offending stems and clean the rest.

The canistels remain far from ripe so no action there.

The komatsuna I blanched; dressed in sesame oil with a little sugar, a little soy sauce and some sesame seeds; and served with a piece of rather badly prepared miso-glazed halibut.

One other thing to close out the week: last night I attended Cobaya Gras, the New Orleans-themed Cobaya dinner. I'm not going to give it a full write up since there were plenty of people there documenting the event, but I do want to highlight my favorite course which I don't think is going to get the love it deserves. That's the crawfish pie and tasso ice cream. The empanada-style pie had a delicately light and crisp crust filled a spicy mixture that was mainly big chunks of crawfish, with just enough other miscellany to enhance it the crawfish without competing with it. The tasso ham ice cream was a lovely balance of sweet and savory with a spicy finish. The ham flavor was infused into the ice cream so it was full of flavor without being full of chunks of ham. I found that the contrasting temperatures and textures brought a lot of extra interest to the complementing flavors in the two halves of the dish. The ice cream wasn't just a novelty, it was an enhancement to the dish which I though brought relevance to the overplayed pork-based ice cream idea. Judging from the ice cream left on the plates I saw being cleared away, it may have been a bit too unusual for some of the diners, but I appreciated it.

On to this week then.

The most prominent items are the big bunch of young-ish spinach and the pile of new potatoes. I really want to use them together. My first thought was a gratin, but my second thought, gnocci, is more interesting. I may yet have a third thought, though.

For the green beans, I'd like to take a second shot at one of the green bean recipes I made last year that didn't turn out as well as I hoped. I haven't done my research yet to pick one out or even to confirm that such a thing exists, but it seems likely. Last year's CSA was pretty green bean intensive.

I noticed that the celery is unusually leafy so I wonder what sort of recipes would make good use of that. Maybe a salad or a pesto? Add them to the parsley in a chimichuri?

The parsley, pepper and tomatoes are staples so no need to find a specific use for them, and the conspicuously missing lettuce I left behind.

Just three CSA-intensive meals this week. Maybe I'll finally go out for dinner when it isn't some foodie event.

No comments: