I started my CSA cooking with two cups of fresh and fragrant basil, making another batch of walnut pesto. I love this recipe. I double it and then freeze the pesto in an ice cube tray.
1 cup packed fresh basil leaves
One-quarter cup coarsely chopped walnuts
4 tablespoons grated hard cheese (Parmesan, reggiano, or whatever is on hand)
2 large cloves of garlic
A squeeze or two of fresh lemon juice
Salt to taste
One-quarter cup extra virgin olive oil
Pulse first six ingredients in food processor. Pour in olive oil slowly while blending.
I added a “Snow Pea and Carrot Salad With Ginger Dressing” from the Lee Brothers’ newest cookbook, Simple Fresh Southern. The recipe says to microplane the ginger (oh please). I used ginger in a squeeze tube instead. For me, the taste was refreshing; for my husband Tony, not so much.
The next day, I made “Green Goddess Potato Salad,” also from the Lees' cookbook, along with a marinated vegetable recipe from cooks.com. I used my cabbage and my fresh field peas, along with light red kidney beans and green onions for the cold veggie salad. The recipe is easy to make and lovely to look. Tony grilled squash when he made his killer burgers, so we had quite a weekend feast.
The Lee brothers don’t post many of their recipes, but I found this version of the potato salad online, and it’s exactly the same. I added lots more tarragon than the recipe calls suggests. Yum!
Since I had plenty of potatoes and zucchini left, I made zucchini-potato soup from Southern Living’s Farmers Market Cookbook. The recipe suggests serving the soup hot or cold. I tried it both ways and liked the hot version the best.
What’s left? Radishes, and plenty of them. Lucky for me, I had finally stopped by Evergreen Farms at the Botanic Garden Farmers Market after hearing rave reviews about the farm’s butter and cream (my friend actually pours cream on his morning cereal). The butter is creamy yellow, sweet, and delicious, especially when mixed with finely chopped radishes (plus a radish leaf or two), grated lemon zest, and salt. Be sure to let the butter get to room temperature before mixing in the other ingredients and serve with fresh Italian bread.