What am I doing?

Documenting the culinary creativity (okay desperation) brought on by a weekly avalanche of root vegetables and winter greens. Be advised, I am not a phenomenal chef. This site is about the weekly challenge of using everything that shows up in the CSA box each Thursday. I should mention that until two weeks ago I couldn’t pick a rutabaga out of a police lineup.

That said, my goal is to find fun and interesting recipes for things I’ve either never encountered before (rutabagas) or things I get too much of (swiss chard). So if you are sitting at your kitchen table having a staring contest with the third red cabbage you’ve received in two weeks, maybe you can find something different to do with it here.

What is a CSA?

Well, CSA stands for either Community Supported Agriculture or Community Sustaining Agriculture, depending who you talk to, and it comes down to this: you pay a lump sum to a farm or a consortium of farms in your area for a portion of everything they grow for a season. They then show up every week at your door or at a designated pickup location with a box of vegetables. You take them home and enjoy the freshness, deploying your culinary wizardry to use as much of the share as possible before the next week. Anyone who has done this will tell you it becomes a game, practically a contest to see if you can do it, and that’s one of the reasons I am trying it out.

You can have a look at the one I joined and how it works at Enterprise Farm’s FAQ page

But it’s winter…

Yes it is. Most CSAs stop in late November, but over the winter this one is focusing on root vegetables and winter greens, and it has partnerships with some farms further south. So I am also ending up with things like oranges and avocadoes.

Do you have any business doing this?

Not really. My cooking abilities can be summed up by the phrase I used when I worked in restaurants and people asked about my bartending prowess: “I make up in enthusiasm what I lack in actual skill”.

Why would you do this to yourself?

Excellent question. There is a list:

-Have seen people I live with doing it and thought it was neat

-Have been told by one roommate that I am “essentially a vegetarian who happens to like bacon”, which would seem to indicate a certain predisposition for this kind of food supply

-I figure it’s a fun way to broaden my cooking horizons: hop right into the deep end, which happens to be filled with piranhas and inexplicably aqueous tigers. And rutabagas.

-Got a crockpot for $10 at a yard sale, so I’m ready to slow cook whatever gets thrown my way

Why would you document this?

Because I promised my parents I would keep them apprised of my progress in this venture, and the phone is proving to be insufficient. It is easy to lose touch with family when you are living far away. Sometimes you forget to mention the details, the daily goings-on, but those are the things that form a picture of our lives and of who we are. Without those details, it is easy to slip away and suddenly you don’t know each other as well as you did. So Mom and Dad, this blog is for you. Here is a little bit of my life. Some of it is ridiculous, some of it is delicious, some of it is downright embarrassing, but it’s also fun and I’m bringing you along for the ride!

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