Grabbing the Gusto

Deirdre Reid – Freelance Writer & Home Cook

rutabaga, Napa cabbage, Hakurei turnips, tatsoi, kale, carrots, lettuce

CSA share from In Good Heart Farm via Grabbing the Gusto

That’s my CSA share this week from In Good Heart Farm. If you participate in Community Supported Agriculture, then you know the challenge of using up your share before it’s time for another one. Don’t get me wrong, I love the abundance, but I have to be more disciplined in my menu planning.

I’m always looking for ways to prepare my CSA vegetables, and I figure I’m not the only one. So I’m going to start sharing my ideas and recipes finds.


Look at the size of that thing! Jim’s going to cut it up and roast it for Thanksgiving. I may encourage him to add some of the purple top turnips I still have from last week in the frig and some of our sweet potato stash.

I’ve been in a maple mood lately. Wait, not just lately. I’m always in a maple mood. It’s been a while since I’ve made these Maple Glazed Roasted Rutabagas. If Jim doesn’t use the rutabaga, I will.

And I’m very intrigued by this Rutabaga, Pear, and Ham Tart with Orange Marmalade Mascarpone Cream. Breakfast, lunch, dinner? Yes.

Napa Cabbage

Hoisin Pork (or chicken, or shrimp) with Napa Cabbage is one of my favorites. I’ve also used Napa cabbage in my versions of Asian and Mexican slaw – one of these days, I’ll have to measure while I make them so I can share the recipes. Strangely enough, I can’t remember when I last made regular old American slaw. Weird.

But I have no idea yet what I’ll do with this head of Napa cabbage. I may treat it as regular cabbage and serve it Lithuanian-style alongside some Cepelinai – meat-filled potato dumplings. I’ve never made these before but saw them on an episode of Eden Eats set in Baltimore and now have a hankering for them – blame it on my strong, one-quarter Lithuanian heritage. I’m going to wait for a cold day when we need some extra fat in our system. Did I mention they’re served with a sour cream-bacon sauce?

Hakurei Turnips

Last night I sautéed the greens from the Hakurei turnips with kohlrabi greens that were hanging out in the frig. I added the usual onions, mushrooms, and garlic. And then I found some bologna Jim had left over from his hunting trip. I chopped up a slice of that along with one last slice of mortadella, and added them to the onion mix. Pork in any form is always good, right?

I’m going to add some of the turnips to the jar of pickled jalapenos that I made for Jim. And I’ll use the rest in our salads. Hakurei are salad turnips – as you can just barely see in the photo above, they look like white radishes.

Tatsoi and Kale

I haven’t figured out yet what I’ll do with these two bunches of greens. However, this Creamed Kale recipe from Nutmeg Nanny is calling my name – and it would be good with tatsoi too. That would make a super Thanksgiving or Christmas Eve dish, wouldn’t it?

My Smoky, Spicy Collard Greens recipe would also work well for kale or tatsoi. We’re eating the last of the Kale and Sweet Potato Gratin tonight – another idea for you.

Carrots and Red-Leaf lettuce

We eat salad nearly every night, so we’ll use the carrots and lettuce for that.

I made the recipe I mentioned earlier this week – Maple Glazed Carrots from Little Dairy on the Prairie. I had a total brain fart and didn’t adjust the ingredients so I ended up with way too much sauce for the tiny amount of carrots I had, but even so, I could tell it was a keeper. It’s probably better for the older carrots you find in the grocery store. Farm carrots don’t really need much sweetening.

I’d love to hear your suggestions for these vegetables.

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