Making the most of early summer greens

We are long-time members of a local CSA. My husband and I stared our CSA journey early in our dating/cohabiting days. Six years later we opted out for two seasons due to tight financial times and the busyness of life with a toddler. After a season or two without our weekly produce pick-up, we discovered that we really missed the CSA. It wasn’t just good food and flavor we missed, but the variety of vegetables and the community of shareholders.

When we decided to purchase a vegetable share for the 2018 season, the family (farmers) who run the CSA were thrilled. We have met the family that owns the farm/CSA many times and have even toured the farm, seeing exactly where our potatoes are dug up. It’s such an intimate relationship with our food. Our CSA has also been able to receive an official Organic designation. Fresh, local, and organic.  We are 5 weeks into our season and the flavors are a familiar welcome. The basil, lettuce, radish greens, and kale, oh my!

If you are familiar with the growing season in the north east, it tends to welcome greens first. We get loads of greens before other vegetables come in like corn, potatoes, beans and tomatoes. Greens are also fussy. They wilt quickly and need to be used up first.

When we unload our share each week, triage begins. If there are radishes or beets, I snip the green tops from them before storage. These greens, along with any kale or chard from the share, are tossed with garlic scapes, scallions, and any near-dead veggies I have in the crisper left-over from the week before. They all get chopped and thrown into a deep pan for sautéing.


This is my favorite way to use up what is left over from the week before and consume our greens before they wilt and lose their flavor and texture.

My favorite part about being part of a CSA is the variety of food we get. It forces me to get creative . This is actually how I learned how to cook. I mean REALLY cook. I had to figure out different ways to use the vegetables from appetizers, sides, main dishes, and hiding them in desserts (hello, chocolate zucchini bread).

I am so happy to have this healthy, fresh food back in my family’s life!


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