CSA Forum, week 3: Don't judge a vegetable by its cover

Image by Flickr user stetted

…but do know where it comes from.

It is fine to question your food. In fact, it is necessary. If you care about your health, it is important to know the Who, What, Where, When, and Why’s when it comes to what you are consuming. Humans have become so far removed from the source of their food that it makes me uneasy thinking of what my food goes through getting to my plate (I won’t even get into meat). Not to say we all need to retreat to hunter-gathering by any means, but having some notion of the origin of our food makes sense. I have come to challenge the authenticity of all food and what this CSA has taught me is that real food need not come in pretty packages.

In the past 2 weeks I have received some unbelievable sweet corn from my CSA, but I almost didn’t even know it. It was undersized, had imperfections, and to me looked iffy. I considered tossing it. Then it came to me. Of course it does, it had just been bearing the elements in a field for months, fighting the summer heat and any unwanted intruders. With few to no pesticides or chemicals, each ear of corn boasts its full potential, the good with the bad. It may not look like the quintessential commercial industrialized farmed corn that we are used to and I am glad for that. A few missing kernels? Maybe even a vagabond beetle? I’ll take it.

Week 3

Week 3 Produce: bag o green beans, 3 ears of corn, 2 sweet potatoes, 4 yellow squash, 4 zucchini

Week 4

Week 4 Produce: baby watermelon, eggplant, 3 ears of corn, 2 banana peppers, 2 cucumbers, bag o butterbeans, collards, 3 radishes, a bunch of squash & zucc's

There are a few vegetables that are foreign to me this week, namely radishes and collards. I don’t know much else to do with radishes other than slice raw and put on a salad. Being from Chicago I don’t think I even knew what a collard was until I moved here. So that being said, HELP!

Please share any ideas you have for these or any other seasonal recipes in the comments section. To check in with what we’ve been cooking the past couple weeks, check out our CSA Forum page.

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