This holiday season, my brother-in-law took a page from my green gift guide and got me and the sous-chef a one-month subscription to a local CSA called Eatwell Farm. He dropped off our first box this week (deliveries are included, the gift was full service!) and we are now up to our ears in organic, locally- grown vegetables -- tadorna leeks, tokyo turnips, navel oranges, satsuma mandarins, lettuce, crocodile spinach, pink lady apples, watermelon radishes, bok choy, cabbage, and carrots. I admit that I feel a little overwhelmed but it's definitely an exciting challenge to figure out how to use it all before it goes bad and/or before next week's box arrives on Thursday!
One of my favorite things about the Eatwell Farm CSA is their adorable, well-written newsletter. Each box comes with a copy of the newsletter (addressed to you) which features updates from the farm, written by farmer Nigel Walker. This week's newsletter covered the expansion of the chicken operation, an update on their greenhouse planting, a weather report, and a report on orchard planting in addition to a page of information about the food in the box AND (this is my favorite part!) several pages of recipes that make use of the vegetables and fruits we received in the box.
Tonight we tried out our first Eatwell Farm recipe -- I was very pleased with the result. So without further ado, here's my slightly modified version of the recipe (the original called for chopped dried red chiles and half a cup of toasted walnuts but I can't handle spicy food and the sous-chef hates nuts with a passion so I omitted both though you're welcome to add them.)
Wilted Russian Kale Salad With Balsamic Vinegar & Orange Zest
- 1 large bunch of kale (I like the russian kind or some other purplish variety for this, rather than the dinosaur kale)
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced or thinly sliced
- 1 small onion, thinly sliced
- 2 Tbsps olive oil
- 1/4 cup organic currants
- 1 tsp orange zest
- 2 tsps balsamic vinegar or balsamic vinegar glaze
- Sea salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
1. Wash the kale well and then chop into large pieces.
2. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and onions and sautee until translucent. Add the kale and cook until completely wilted.
3. Remove from heat and let cool. Add the vinegar, currants, zest, and salt and pepper to taste. Toss well to combine and serve.
Tonight's dinner included this salad served with chicken piccata, roasted delicata squash, and basmati rice. It was a delicious, balanced meal.