CSA Baskets 101: Second Pick Up

Everyone got a pint of strawberries.

When the greens come in, the greens come in.  Thank the Lord for the perfect cooling of the weather and rain to make them abundant for the CSA members at Madison Creek Farms this week!  You can tell by all the pics there were a ton of goodies in our baskets this time around.

Almost everyone got a red leaf lettuce.

Most everyone received a red leaf lettuce and a romaine lettuce.  I got a buttercrunch and a romaine lettuce.  I like them all so it really didn’t matter to me :)

Spring Braising Mix

If you are new to surveying the many types of greens there are, this is definitely an exciting week for you to experiment.  Braising greens are just a random mix of different types of greens sewn together in the field.  To cook them simply use a little olive oil, onion, garlic, a dash of vinegar if you like, and salt and pepper to taste.  Sometimes after I saute them I use a little sprinkle of slivered almonds for crunch.


Alot of you had never seen or heard of kohlrabi.  Kohlrabi come in green or purple, can be eaten raw or cooked, and taste a lot like broccoli stems, radishes or cabbage. The word kohlrabi is German for cabbage turnip (kohl as in cole-slaw, and rübe for turnip) though kohlrabi is more related to cabbage and cauliflower than to root vegetables.  You can even use the kohlrabi greens to cook with your braising mix.  You can make a kohlrabi and apple slaw or make quick kohlrabi pickles.

Kohlrabi Apple Slaw:

  • 1/4 cup cream
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 tablespoon good mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • Fresh mint, chopped
  • 1 pound fresh kohlrabi, trimmed, peeled, grated or julienned
  • 2 apples, peeled, grated or julienned

Whisk cream into light pillows – this takes a minute or so, no need to get out a mixer. Stir in remaining dressing ingredients, the kohlrabi and apple. Serve immediately.

Quick Kohlrabi Pickles:

  • 1-2 small kohlrabi bulbs, trimmed, peeled, and cut into cubes
  • Good olive oil (optional)
  • Rice wine vinegar
  • Kosher Salt
  • Fresh Black Pepper
  • Pinch of sugar or squeeze of honey

Place the kohlrabi chunks in the bowl of a lidded, airtight container.  Drizzle with a touch of olive oil, a good splash of vinegar, and honey.  Sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper.  Replace the lid and shake well.  Taste and adjust seasoning.  Place in fridge, shaking occasionally.  They are best after they have marinated for a few hours.

Mustard Greens

You can cook the mustard greens the same way you would any other greens by sauteeing with olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper.


Our CSA owner, Peggy, led a workshop today showing everyone how to saute kale and make a dish that can be a side or a main meal depending on how you finesse it at the end.  My favorite way to enjoy kale is in an Italian soup I make every winter with potatoes, Italian sweet sausage, kale and crushed red pepper.



If you guys have never tried grilled romaine lettuce for a salad, you should.  It’s delicious!  You can grill the lettuce on an outdoor grill or an indoor grill pan, either way works fine.  It gives the lettuce a completely different flavor and texture alongside a wonderful summer dinner.

Buttercrunch Lettuce

Tea Rose

Ahhh the flowers, a wonderful perk to my CSA.  Tea roses and peonies made it into my bouquet this week.  It’s a great way to bring some of the beauty on the farm into my home and enjoy every day.

Remember to use everything from your baskets!  You can replant the onion and lettuce bottoms to grow more at home.  All the trimmings can be washed and boiled into stock.  I will only be composting the kohlrabi bulk peels and the radish tops.  I will even use the trimmed strawberry tops to make homemade strawberry mint lemonade syrup.  If you want to know more about this type of cooking to get the most out of your CSA basket, check out my ebook, Don’t Compost It, Cook It.

What did you get in your basket lately you are excited about trying?

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