Wednesday, July 14, 2010

CSA, Week 10: Salads, BLTs, and Stocking the Freezer

Posted By on Wed, Jul 14, 2010 at 4:08 PM

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Since I’m heading out of town, it’s been a race to use this week’s CSA share from Whitton Farms. Fortunately, I had a break-through moment early on: Eat it or freeze it. So the peaches went in lunch bags and on cereal, and the carrots (left over from past weeks) and the string beans went into the freezer.

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I’m new to freezing fresh vegetables, but I’m trying to do more this summer so I can eat locally when the weather turns cold. I follow the advice in this adorable brochure I found at a yard sale published in 1969 by Kerr Glass, the well-known makers of canning jars from Oklahoma. According to the brochure’s handy-dandy chart, this is how to freeze most vegetables: Clean and slice produce, blanch in boiling salted water for two to four minutes, and plunge into an ice bath. The brochure suggests freezing veggies in glass jars (a pre-Ziplock idea), but I use baggies. I’d like to find freezer boxes that are more environmentally friendly, so if you know of a source, speak up please.

In addition to freezing, I made lots of sandwiches, including our first BLTs with bacon from Newman Farm. Newman raises Berkshire pork in the Southern Ozarks, and their bacon is sweet and smoky, a fine complement to Whitton’s heirloom tomatoes. You can buy Newman products online or Saturdays at the Memphis Farmers Market downtown.

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I also built a sandwich using cucumbers, basil, and banana peppers from my own garden. As I side salad, I tossed tomatoes, basil, Vidalia onions, and goat cheese with a lemon and oil vinaigrette. Sometimes, the best summer eating is the most simple.

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