Here is the breakdown for the first week’s produce, along with a picture guide to translate your share.
small share +
baby swiss chard
medium share +
micro green basil
micro purple basil
extra young garlic
All of your greens will want to go into the refrigerator, rinsed, patted dry, wrapped in a paper towel, and then wrapped loosely in plastic. A grocery bag or unzipped ziploc works well for this. The sunchokes, radishes, and parsnips should be loosely wrapped in plastic in the fridge, where they’ll keep for a couple of weeks.
Some hints on how to use the produce (more recipes to follow tonight and tomorrow):
Shungiku: This is the leaf of an edible chrysanthemum, popular in Asian cuisine. It is tasty in a supporting role in salads, and as a last minute addition to stir fries and soups.
Young garlic: Treat like a green onion. The bottoms are a little tougher, so saute them a little longer.
Parsnip: A sweet root vegetable, relative to the carrot. Most people know these. Grate them over a salad, roast them with other vegetables, or put them into soup. Fabulous with a bit of coriander and butter.
: A Japanese green, a little like arugula, but milder. These pointy leaved greens are good in salads, or tossed at the last minute into a stir fry or simple soup. Try quickly sauteeing them in sesame oil, then tossing with a blend of soy sauce and ground up sesame seeds (here, also good with
Microgreens: These are premium goods. They’re the nutrient packed 8-12 day old baby versions of plants you know well like basil, arugula, peas, kale, and buckwheat. Swanky restaurants buy them at top dollar, and you’re getting them in your CSA share! Try them on salads and sandwiches. Tonight, I mixed some basil and arugula greens (each separate in the Large Share, or in the microgreen mix of the small share) with tomatoes, mozzarella, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and smoked salt, then used the mix to top some crusty bread slices. These won’t last long this spring, so please make the most of them while we have them.
Sunchokes: Also known as Jerusalem Artichokes, these are the nutritious tubers of a sunflower relative. Scrub them clean – peeling is optional. They’re like a cross between potatoes and water chestnuts. They can be sliced thinly over salads, pureed into soups, or roasted with other veggies. I advise going slow on the first meal with them — a “pre-biotic” that support healthy gut flora and fauna, they’re a little like cabbage in that a minority of people react gassily to eating them. They’ll keep in the fridge, and I will get a few recipes to you in the next day or so.
Onion scapes: The flowering tops of onions (all alliums, really — you’ll see garlic scapes in the near future as well), these can be treated mostly as you treat a mild green onion top. I’m pretty sure you don’t eat the flowering bulb right at the top. I’ll give you some recipes to make them disappear as they become more prevalent in our shares, but for now, chop them up and toss them into stir fries, biscuits, soups, etc.
Please email me with questions! Questions are welcomed, as are suggestions for using up the produce. It can be overwhelming, but if you put it all away properly when you get it home, it lasts all week and into the next. I’ll hit you all with recipes and suggested storage methods as the week progresses.
edit I fixed the spelling of shungiku. Leave it to the person who lived in Japan to mess up the spelling of Japanese words.