It’s Not Easy Having Greens – CSA Update

Categories Cooking, Eating, Learning

We picked up our fifth week of CSA veggies today – not sure how it’s possible that we’ve been doing this for over a month already! I’d be lying if I said the amount of greens and lettuce was totally manageable…the early weeks of the CSA are clearly heavy on greens and not a whole lot of other things.

However, in the last couple of weeks, we’ve found ourselves the lucky recipients of some very nice variety…yes, and more greens.

I’m not complaining…it is completely true that we do green smoothies and salads pretty much every day here. Still, when you have lettuce and kale and the greens from the kohlrabi and the beets and all the rest…it’s still a lot of greens to store and figure out how to use before they spoil. First world problems, right?

Finally figured out what to do with my broccoli rabe – we just chopped it up and tossed it in a pasta dish that I made up in my head. I know we used garlic, some sun dried tomatoes, a chicken sausage, a little bit of whatever wine was open at the time…wish I could remember. Capers, maybe? Whatever it was, it looked like this…only not as blurry in person.


So back to the greens. Take a look at what we saw in our bags last week…


Peas, green and red leaf lettuce, kale, Swiss chard, kohlrabi, Napa cabbage, broccoli, garlic scapes, turnips, and fresh thyme. There was a bunch of green stuff in there called frisee, which I truly had never heard of before. Turns out it’s curly endive. Who knew? Oh, and there was a little patty pan squash hiding way in the back and a zucchini that didn’t make the photo. Super Sister and Fiancé picked up their goods and we also shared a couple of items with the BFF and her Husband.

This week we had many of the same things again – more peas, broccoli, and green leaf lettuce. New this week was escarole and two very cute little purple cabbages. We also have garlic scapes, three kohlrabi (which the farm intern told us is the last of the kohlrabi…sad), Swiss chard, beets, cucumbers, yellow summer squash, and fresh basil. We passed on the basil, though, since we have some growing in our little back deck garden (more on that later).

Here are our very cute cabbages. These babies are about the size of a softball. They are going to be great on the grill. Yup, grilled cabbage. It’s awesome.


Check out the size of the summer squash next to these other goodies.  The carrots are kind of short – very much like the fresh bunches you see at the supermarket, but not as long as the already trimmed ones that come in the bags. Always wondered why those pre-trimmed bagged ones were so much longer than the fresh bunches. Anyway…The cucumbers are pretty standard, but look at the size of the squash! The really yellow one in the back looks smallish behind the carrot greens, but it’s a monster.


Our pickup time is a bit awkward…between 4:00 and 5:00 PM at the farm, which is about fifteen minutes from our house. Once we get home and unpacked, dinner needs to be quick. And I really like to try and incorporate something we just picked up, too.

Tonight we put some of the Swiss chard to good use in a pasta dish that we have now made twice in the last ten days. What’s ridiculous is that it is so colorful and tasty that it was gone before a photo could happen – both times! It’s very fast – on the table in under twenty minutes. No lie. It has Swiss chard, scallions, kalamata olives, lemon, cilantro, paprika, and a little bit of apple cider vinegar. Intrigued? I promise you it’s good. In fact, it is so good, Fab Hub and I both ate the slightly wilted chard and didn’t hate it. Score!

I have to send you to either my Pinterest page (pasta board) or the original post at The Healthy Apple to take a look at the picture and grab the recipe. But do it – it’s fast, light, and delicious and makes good use of some of the CSA goodies you may be wondering how to use.

Tomorrow, Kidzilla and I are going to make kale chips (her request) and roast some of those vegetables. Roasted vegetables in summer? I know, but I recently read a chapter in a book that talked about the beauty of roasted vegetables to keep around for use later in the week. Tried it and loved it! Roasted beets or carrots or corn in a salad? Awesome. I’m almost finished with the book, so more on all of that another day.

What are you doing with your fresh summer vegetables? Share some ideas in the comments!


Lisa A. Listwa is a self-employed writer with experience in education, publishing, and the martial arts. Believing there was more to life than punching someone else’s time clock and inspired by the words of Henry David Thoreau, she traded her life as a high school educator for a life as a writer and hasn’t looked back. She is mother to one glorious handful of a daughter, wife to the nicest guy on the planet, and reluctant but devoted owner of three Rotten Cats. You can find her adventures and thoughts on living life deliberately here on the blog.

14 thoughts on “It’s Not Easy Having Greens – CSA Update

    1. I just really love vegetables and (blessedly) so does Kidzilla. Honestly, we would not have signed up for the CSA share if I didn’t think we’d use it. Just reminds me that if we don’t, it will go to waste. I think it keeps me from laming out and saying “eh, pizza is fine” when I see those heads of lettuce and escarole staring at me.

  1. Oh, that is a lot of greens. I got on a Swiss Chard kick a few months ago and planted some in my garden, but being fickle, I am not inspired to pick and use it as often as I should. I didn’t grow up on greens, so they aren’t exactly comfortable on my palate. How about using them in a strata? That would mean turning on the oven in the summer heat, though. Is the book you are talking about Tamar Adler’s book? That lady is so inspirational!

      1. I have read it. I love all her ideas of how to stretch every bit of the food into multiple meals with ideas I’ve never even thought of before. Great book!

  2. Grilled cabbage. Love it. This summer I’ve been making a lot of salads with various greens. Many of which I didn’t know before…although you beat me on frisee. I’ve never heard of that. It might seem boring to eat salads and not make huge dishes, but that’s all I’ve been able to do with vegetables this summer. Maybe I should make that eggplant/pasta sauce dish I made last year. That was good.

    1. My daughter asked for an eggplant the other day at the market and I have yet to decide what to do with it. I do not want mushy eggplant. Send me that recipe?

      The frisee turns out to be fancy for endive. Yup – curly endive. Had it last night with roasted beets and carrots, some feta, cucumbers. Tossed on a little bit of pasta, a quick vinaigrette and called it dinner. Sometimes a salad really just is enough – especially when it’s super hot and humid like it has been here all week.

  3. Your posts are making my mouth water. I am not creative in the kitchen, but I think that I’d become so very quickly if we had all those greens!

    1. I’m trying really hard to use what we have and to shop and cook purposefully. Several months ago, I took a really good look at how much we were wasting in unused veggies that spoiled, leftovers that sat around too long – it made me very unhappy. So thanks to some really good cookbooks and (of course) Pinterest, I’m trying to think about the ingredients rather than overall dishes. So far we’re doing pretty well. I’m also amazed at how much the Fab Hub is willing to try…he’s come a long way from the cheesesteak, mac and cheese, canned soup guy he was when I met him.

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