Archive for January, 2010

Box 9 – Opening

What’s inside our half box #9?

  • Broccoli – three spears, of varying sizes
  • Lettuce – one head
  • Rapini – (AKA Broccoli Raab) one bundle
  • Radishes – one large bundle of the French Breakfast variety
  • “Young” Onions – one bundle of these onions which are halfway between spring onions (AKA scallions or green onions) and full onions
  • Italian Parsley – one bundle
  • Ponkan Tangerine – two
  • Red Grapefruit – two
  • Avocado – two, plus one from the extras box
Box 9

Box 9

Initial thoughts:

Of all the items in this week’s half box, only the rapini stands out as unusual, which means there’s still hope that we might finish an entire box in just the one week – especially since nothing seems to need to sit out ripening either.

Usage ideas:

  • Broccoli – Hmmm… I think it’s safe to say that we’ve both got mixed feelings about broccoli, and we’ll both eat it in small quantities, but rarely would we actually specifically chose to eat it, at least not on it’s own. Given that there’s plenty of it this week, our best bet is probably to combine and/or disguise it with other things, such as baking in a quiche with ham and cheese, or steamed then covered in sweet & sour sauce.
  • Lettuce – This will definitely feature in either salads or sandwiches this week, the latter of which I’m going to be eating plenty of, so that’ll probably use up this entire head.
  • Rapini – The CSA newsletter has a recipe for rapini polenta, but I doubt we’ll be making that. A quick search around teh intarwebs seems to hint that it works well with pastas, but since it’s of Italian and Chinese origin, this doesn’t really surprise me! This will probably be the one thing this week that we’ll need to really think about to find a good use for.
  • Radishes – The simple radishes on buttered bread recipe (if you can call something that simple a recipe) from the last time we had these is definitely in consideration, as is featuring in a salad at some point. However, I’m curious as to whether they’d work in a cooked form, so might experiment in that direction as well.
  • Onions – The tops of these can be used in any dish that calls for spring onions, and the bulbs could probably substitute for shallots in a pinch, or whenever only a small amount of onion is required. That being said, they might be good candidates for pickling, so I’ll have to look into that as well.
  • Italian Parsley – Obviously this can be very easily used as a garnish, and otherwise combined with meats and other herbs in any number of other dishes, so I can’t really think of anything in particular that this might be used in yet.
  • Ponkan Tangerine – If these are as sweet as the newsletter says they are, we’ll probably just eat them out of hand (or let el nino attack one again),  but they’d definitely work in a salad as well, as they’d make for an interesting contrast with the radishes.
  • Red Grapefruit – I’ve not eaten grapefruit in years, so I might just do the classic halves with sugar for breakfast one morning. Otherwise, I’m sure we can come up with something for these, perhaps adding them into a small batch of marmalade?
  • Avocado – These are likely to be the last of the season (according to the newsletter), so June will need to make the most of them. That being said, there are three of them, so I might try claiming one for myself (even though I’m not a huge fan of avocado, at least I haven’t been up until now). Thinking of which, I was catching up on my ‘Good Eats’ backlog yesterday, and in the latest episode (“Live and Let Diet”) Alton combined avocado and sardines on toast, which sounds like something I wouldn’t mind trying…

Photos by me, edited by June:

Broccoli

Broccoli

Lettuce

Lettuce

Rapini

Rapini

Radishes

Radishes

Young Onions

Young Onions

Italian Parsley

Italian Parsley

Ponkan Tangerines

Ponkan Tangerines

Red Grapefruit

Red Grapefruit

Avocado

Avocado

Box 8 – Roundup

Actual usage & thoughts:

  • Mizuna – Used in the BMTs and BMs, and in the adhoc salad, in both cases as a lettuce substitute. As I mentioned before, the leaves are very much like rocket (arugula), but without the peppery kick, and are fairly tasty. I’m not sure that just eating them raw brought out the best of the flavours though, so if we got this again I’d definitely want to try incorporating it into cooked dishes.
  • Green Chard – June made the ‘Zuppa Toscana’ clone using the chard earlier in the week, which was an okay soup, but nothing special – definitely not as good as the real deal from Olive Garden, hence the lack of blog posts about it. The chard also played a key role in the Five Spice Beef Stir-fry. In both cases, the chard added good flavour and in the case of the stir-fry some crunch, and is something we’d definitely be able to use easily should it appear in future boxes.
  • Celery – Apart from the adhoc salad, the celery has been a bit neglected, so I’m munching on a few stalks as I type, in lieu of a less healthy evening snack! The stalks (once washed, of course) are wonderfully crunchy, and have that sweet almost grassy taste that celery should have. Actually, thinking of washing them, for at least a couple of the stalks in the bundle, the lower ends appeared to have some soil (or something else very brown) up inside the inner walls of the stalk – actually inside the stalk, not just on the surface – so I played it safe and just trimmed those parts off. While I’m eating these last stalks, which are getting a little soft & flexible now due to age but surprisingly still retain their crunch, I’m noticing that they’re nowhere near as stringy with the fibres in the celery as some shop-bought ones are, which is a definite plus!
  • Red Round Tomatoes – These sat on the counter all week, ripening in the sun, and are now ready to eat (apart from one or two spots which are starting to get a little surface damage), so they’ll get used at some point this coming weekend I’m sure.
  • Green Peppers – As predicted, we couldn’t find a use for these, so they’re frozen along with the others now.
  • Canistel – For some reason, the canistels from this week’s box ripened much faster than the previous ones, which means that they’re all pretty much equally ripe now. June is fairly sure that some of them are actually rotten, but I think they’re still usable. However, I’ve not managed to convince her into try cooking them in a soup (with or without other roasted vegetables), so we might need to find another idea instead.

Ratings:

  • Hits – Mizuna, Green Chard, Celery
  • Near Misses – none
  • Total Flops – none
  • Not Rated – Red Round Tomatoes, Green Peppers, Canistel

Final Opinion:

This turned out to be an interesting week, since we used probably just as much from older boxes as we did from this box, but what we did have from this box was consistently good, so hopefully the remaining items will be equally satisfactory – I’ll definitely need to do another catchup post in the next few weeks! Also, unlike previous weeks, this was the first week in which we’ve been able to add our own home-grown veg into the mix, in this case the radishes (greens in the stir-fry, the rest in my salads), which is giving us yet another impetus to really use this great stuff. Next up on that front will be the baby bok choy in a few weeks time, so until then it’s back to using just what’s in the boxes!

Creamy Cabbage & Potatoes, and a Stir-Fry

I found this recipe online yesterday while catching up on my daily websites, and since it featured both cabbage and potatoes, looked tasty, and was listed as a frugal dish, I passed it onto June for consideration. She liked the sound of it enough to give it a try, so last night we did!

Cream Cabbage & Potatoes, adapted from a Serious Eats recipe

  • 2 tablespoons Olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter, divided
  • 1 largish onion, halved and sliced
  • 1 pound cabbage, cored and sliced thinly
  • Salt & Pepper
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 2 pounds potatoes
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • Cayenne Pepper

Before the main part of this dish can be prepared, the potatoes need to be baked. This can be done in the oven, but since the skins aren’t required, baking them in the microwave is quicker – just prick the skins with a fork, and cook on high for about 15 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 400°F, then heat the olive oil in a pot (large enough to hold the cabbage) over medium heat. [NOTE – The original recipe calls for 2 tablespoons of butter to be melted in at this point, but we left this out to cut the calorie count a little – feel free to add some if you want!]. Add the onion, toss to coat with fat and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft and just beginning to color, about 10 minutes. Stir in about 1 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and then toss in the cabbage. Continue to stir until the cabbage and onions are completely mixed and the cabbage is beginning to wilt. Pour in the vinegar and water, cover the pot, and turn the heat to low. Cook for about 10 minutes more, stirring a couple of time, until the cabbage is tender enough to eat.

Next, peel the potatoes and mash them roughly with whichever tool you prefer. Melt the tablespoon of butter in a 10- or 12-inch oven-proof skillet (cast iron is perfect for this). Add the flour all at once, turn the heat to medium low, and cook, stirring constantly, for about 2 minutes. Stir in the milk, raise the heat a bit, and cook until the mixture thickens, a few minutes. Stir frequently to break up lumps and prevent the mixture from sticking to the skillet.

Turn the heat off under the skillet and stir the potatoes into the sauce. Season with cayenne pepper, if you like, and then stir in the cabbage and onions. When the contents of the skillet are thoroughly mixed up, smooth the top with your spoon and bake for 15 to 20 minutes.

Creamy Cabbage & Potatoes

Creamy Cabbage & Potatoes

Officially, it serves 4-6 people, but that’s probably as a side rather than as the main. June was being good to her weight-watchers diet and only had 1/6th, and we served a bit of another 1/6th to the little one (he got bored of it and ended up eating something else as well)… which meant I ate the rest of it! It needed a little salt & pepper added at the end to give it the right balance, but was otherwise excellent. June wasn’t too keen on it as is, so she opted to add on top a bit of both her homemade Roasted Garlic jelly and a bit of her also homemade Red Pepper & Garlic jelly. I tried the same on a bit of mine, and while it made for a nice tangy flavour, I preferred the plain option this time around. I’m not sure we’ll be making this one again, as it’s more time-consuming to make than it first appears, and June wasn’t overly sold on it, but I’d quite happily eat it again, so perhaps we’ll compromise and made it as a side dish for something else instead.

Since we’ve had cabbage & potatoes twice this week already, tonight was the turn of the green chard. June wanted to cook the remaining noodles from a packet we opened for the Hot & Sweet Chicken stir-fry, so she threw together a Beef & Greens stir-fry, featuring both the green chard and the radish tops from our very first home garden harvest.

Beef & Greens Stir-Fry

Beef & Greens Stir-Fry

The result was a clear success, partly from June soaking the noodles in hotter water this time around which prevented them sticking, and partly from the good mix of ingredients. The beef was definitely lifted by the addition of the Chinese five spice blend, and the contrasting leafy and crunchy green chard (along with the always-satisfying taste of home-grown veg, in this case the radish tops) worked really well with the noodles. Personally, I think I’d have preferred a little heat in the dish, just to give it more kick, but that’s definitely optional.

Given that we’ve got plenty of both beef and noodles in stock in the freezer and pantry respectively, I suspect we’ll be making a few more variations on this recipe using whatever’s in the forthcoming CSA boxes!

My my my… Sapote!

As hinted at in my previous post, we’ve finally manage to make something from our seemingly ever-growing collection of slowly-riping black sapote fruit. June took the initiative and created a Black Sapote Kulfi recipe from scratch (or there abouts), and it’s seriously tasty!

Black Sapote Kulfi

Black Sapote Kulfi ... on a stick!

The end result is amazingly creamy, very smooth, and has a very interesting flavour. I’m not quite sure how to describe the flavour, now that I’m thinking about it, as it’s a strange mix that seems fruity, earthy, and tangy, yet doesn’t really taste like anything else. As for the kulfi itself, I personally think that it works best when only just defrosting, about a minute after coming out of the freezer, but June prefers it when it’s much softer. Either way, it tastes great, and the fact that it takes forever to melt means that you don’t need to worry about it dripping or turning to mush. That being said, it doesn’t really work that well on a stick like this, as it sticks to the mold making extraction rather tricky!

We’ll definitely be using our future sapotes this way; since there are at least two that are still ripening up, and inevitably there will be more in future boxes, so that shouldn’t be too far away. No more sapotes will go to waste, that’s for sure…

Colcannon at last!

Another productive cooking weekend means that we’ve made another dent on our burgeoning veg stocks. On Saturday, even before I’d had a chance to post the opening of Box 8, we’d used the mizuna and red round tomatoes for BLTs (well, BMT for June, BM for me):

Open BMT

Open BMT

Closed BMT

Closed BMT

The mizuna was an interesting change from the usual lettuce, since it was much leafier, like rocket/arugula without the kick really, and it kept the sarnies slightly healthier than the just ‘B’ they would have been otherwise (for me, anyway).

Yesterday, I threw together a simple salad using the rest of the mizuna, some more of the cabbage from Box 5, a few stalks of celery, a big handful of raisins, and pretty much our entire radish harvest (with a improvised dijonnaise-ish dressing). Delicious! Yes, I forgot about the green peppers (and the carrots we bought a few days back), so a slightly missed opportunity but no matter – the result was great, with the heat of the radishes and dijon mustard mixing with the sweetness of the raisins, and the contrasting textures and crunchiness levels all working well.

However, the star of Sunday’s dining was the Pan-Fried Mahi Mahi & Colcannon that June prepared in the evening.

Pan-Fried Mahi Mahi & Colcannon

Pan-Fried Mahi Mahi & Colcannon

The fish was great, perfectly done and the crusting was excellent. However, the star of the show was the colcannon. June decided to actually find a recipe (from one of her hundreds of cookbooks) rather than rely on my rather ad-hoc version, and then improvised a little on that with the addition of caramelised red onions. Oh my! I could have eaten the entire batch and barely noticed! It was easily the best colcannon I’ve ever had, and needless to say it’s henceforth definitely going to on our frequent cook-list. In fact, I think I’ll be making this version rather than my own from now on, which is saying something. It’s possible to say that it was the freshness (and quality) of the kale that lifted this dish, so I’m looking forward to trying this one with both future box contents and other types of kale.

Oh, and before I finish, a quick teaser… we’ve finally used 5 of our black sapotes, and the results are … impressive. More details on that another time!

Box 8 – Opening

What’s inside our half box #8?

  • Mizuna – one bundle
  • Green Chard – one bundle
  • Oyster Mushrooms – donated to another CSAer, as there’s no extras box still (due to the freeze damage) but we didn’t want them.
  • Celery – one large bundle
  • Red Round Tomatoes – two
  • Green Peppers – officially it’s one per box, but we ended up with two. If you see the photos, you’ll understand why they gave us two of them!
  • Cilantro/Coriander – donated to the same CSAer as the mushrooms, since June is passionately averse to the taste (and even the smell) of this
  • Canistel – two
Box 8

Box 8

Initial thoughts:

Another small box due to the frost damage reducing the harvests, especially once we’d given away the mushrooms and coriander. However, what’s left is all very easily usable, so I’m hoping that this will be our first box that we complete finish… apart from the green peppers of course 🙂

Usage ideas:

  • Mizuna – As mentioned in the Box 7 roundup, June had a BLT today. The ‘L’ was really not L but M, Mizuna that is. I skipped the T to have a BL (well, BM) as well. Still plenty left though, so we might do another stirfry at some point, or there’s always salads. Actually, since I’m going to be taking lunch to work with me this week, I might end up using some in the sarnies I make.
  • Green Chard – June mentioned a Potato & Greens soup recipe – a clone of the ‘Zuppa  Toscani’ from Olive Garden – earlier today, which sounds great to me, since that’s the soup I always go for when we go there. The chard will definitely be good in this, so that’s at least some of it covered.
  • Celery – The CSA newsletter features an ‘Ants on a Log’ recipe this time, which makes me laugh, as I can’t hear that phrase without thinking of the daft Playhouse Disney show ‘Tasty Time with ZeFronk’ which featured it. Blame El Nino for inflicting that upon us… However, I really like celery, so I’ll probably eat a fair amount of it raw (with mayo is my preferred), but it’s easily cooked with too, so there’s plenty of other possibilities.
  • Red Round Tomatoes – As with last week’s, these will need to wait most of the week to ripen up fully. Then, who knows 🙂
  • Green Peppers – Given the size of the peppers, I might manage to use the smaller of the two, but I suspect that the larger will end up in the freezer with the others…
  • Canistel – These will take a fair while to ripen, if the previous ones are anything to go by, so I doubt we’ll be able to use these this week.

Photos by me, edited by June:

Mizuna

Mizuna

Green Chard

Green Chard

Celery

Celery

Red Round Tomatoes

Red Round Tomatoes

Green Peppers

Green Peppers

Canistel

Canistel

Box 7 – Roundup

Actual usage & thoughts:

  • Cabbage – Apart from the one or two leaves that we used as props for the Dim Sum, this cabbage is still in the fridge waiting for us.
  • Lacinato Kale – About half of the kale was used in the meat & two veg meal, and was delicious. The other half we’re planning at last to use in colcannon, but June’s cooking so it’ll be a different recipe to the one I usually make – if the meal is successful it’ll be blogged about separately later.
  • Garlic Chives – We used these in most of the Dim Sum recipes, and as garnish on the Szechuan Clementine Pork. I’m glad we managed to use it all while still fresh, and it added that little something to both dishes. Definitely worth having, and I hope to see it in more boxes to come.
  • Red Round Tomatoes – These took all week to ripen, and so we didn’t get a chance to use them until today. June used half of the larger one in a BLT, but it was the same as all the previous tomatoes – firm, not bitter or acid, but not very sweet either. The problem is that we’ve both had very sweet tomatoes (homegrown by my grandparents) in the UK, and it’s hard not to compare all other tomatoes to those.
  • Clementine Tangerines – The little one managed to destroy one of the two by the time we got the box home, but the other we managed to use for the Szechuan Clementine Pork. The Clementine was full of flavour, especially so considering how tiny they were, but since they’re essentially mandarin oranges they’re still a little on the tart side, something that needs to be compensated for in a recipe.
  • Carambola – We left it all week to make sure it was fully ripe, and sliced and ate it this morning. It was nice and juicy, soft yet still firm enough to bite into easily. However, as may seems like a theme of this post, it wasn’t as sweet as previous ones we’ve had. In fact, the sweetest starfruit we’ve ever had came from the ‘Robert is Here’ store earlier last year, and no subsequent ones (from there or elsewhere) have managed to attain that level. That being said, it wasn’t unsweet, and I quite happily polished it off within a few minutes.
  • Black Sapote – Still not ripe, as expected. Three of the four are coming along nicely, but the fourth is still very green.
  • Avocado – This one is definitely ripe now, so June will probably use it in the next day or two.

Ratings:

  • Hits – lacinato kale, garlic chives
  • Near Misses – carambola, round red tomatoes, clementine tangerines
  • Total Flops – none
  • Not Rated – cabbage, black sapote, avocado

Final Opinion:

The carambola, tomatoes, and clementines all shared a common quality – tasty, ripe, but not as sweet as they could have been. Otherwise this was a surprisingly good box, particularly so considering the inclement weather that seriously damaged much of the crops in the area. We’re rapidly accumulating black sapotes though, so we’re going to have to start experimenting with those soon.

Mid-week Munchies

We’ve been fairly good with actually cooking this week, which means we’ve also been using our half box’s contents. However, most of the meals aren’t really blog-worthy in their own right, so here’s a quick summary:

Saturday – A first for us, in that we actually tried out a recipe from the CSA newsletter! The dish in question was an (apparently fairly bastardised) Szechuan Clementine Chicken that we substituted pork instead of chicken. Obviously, this used our one remaining clementine, and was garnished with garlic chives. To be honest, while the resultant meal was good enough to eat (and pretty hot from the chili), it wasn’t anything notable, especially since it ended up far too dry for my liking – I’m British, I like my sauces! I don’t think we’ll be having this particular one again.

Sunday – Dim Sum! Between us (well, I took photos and folded wontons, June did the rest … but that’s just details), we put together a tasty selection. The cabbage from Box 7 got used as a prop (as the photos will show), and the cabbage from Box 5 was part of the filling of the Pork Buns, along with the garlic chives from Box 7. Those garlic chives also appeared in the Beef Wontons, since we’d still got a bit left. I’ve never been a fan of boiled wontons, but the fried ones – and the steamed buns – were delicious.

Tuesday – A quick meat-and-two-veg dish of grilled chicken, steamed lacinato kale, and roasted beets. While the kale was excellent (June sauted it in olive oil with garlic before steaming), the beets weren’t softening in the oven so we had to resort to nuking them to speed things up. However, the end result wasn’t really worth the effort, as the texture was both too soft in places and too crunchy in others, and the flavour lacked impact. Oh, and the reasons we didn’t make my normal colcannon are twofold – June didn’t realise that I wanted to cook it that way, and we didn’t have any potatoes left!

Today – I finally found a use for at least some of the hundreds… well, three, green peppers that have been taunting me from the fridge for the past weeks. June hadn’t planned anything this evening, and I was impatient (ie hungry enough to actually do something about it), so I decided to throw something simple together. Half a green pepper got thinly sliced into strips and quickly fried along with some Polish Kielbasa, before being tossed into a wholemeal wrap (or three). While the pepper wasn’t as sweet as some, and to be frank was on the elderly side, it was still firm and crisp, making for a good contrast in the wraps.

No idea what we’ll be having tomorrow or Friday yet, so the week is still wide open!

Box 7 – Opening

What’s inside Box 7?

  • Cabbage – one head
  • Lacinato Kale – one bundle
  • Garlic Chives – one bundle
  • Red Round Tomatoes – two
  • Clementine Tangerines – two very small fruits
  • Carambola – one (AKA starfruit)
  • Black Sapote – four
  • Avocado – one, the Brooks ‘late’ variety this time
Box 7

Box 7

Initial Thoughts:

There was a very long (for Florida) cold spell this week, with several frosty nights, so much of the plants being grown for the CSA have suffered serious damage, so the contents of this box (and the next 4 probably) is reduced from the normal selection – including no extras box for swaps and additionals. If we’d been given the choice, we probably wouldn’t have kept the sapote or the cabbage, and swapped for something else (like a different kale or some more green chard), but since we couldn’t we’re going to have to make the best of what we’ve got.

Usage ideas:

  • Cabbage – We’ve still got the cabbage left from Box 5, so we’re definitely going to need to think of a few more ideas for all of it. While picking up the box from the farm, Farmer Margie suggested we try making it into a soup, cooking it until just translucent (ie not boiling it to death), so that might be worth a try.
  • Lacinato Kale – I’ve had curly kale quite often when cooking for myself back in the UK, so I might try my usual dish with this kale, Colcannon. Quick summary of the recipe is steam the kale until tender, then add to mashed potato to make a bubble & squeak-ish side.
  • Garlic Chives – Last time we only managed to use a little of the garlic chives when fresh, the rest are dry in the fridge. This time I hope we’ll use more, but that’ll really depend on the recipes we come up with to use the other box items.
  • Red Round Tomatoes – These two aren’t quite ripe yet, so they’ll be on the counter this week for use either later this week or next.
  • Clementine Tangerines – You’ll notice from the list above that there are two clementines in the box, but only one in the photo below. El nino managed to get hold of one from the box as we were going through it at the farm, and we (foolishly) let him keep playing with it in the car during the short drive home. Halfway home we noticed a very citrus-y smell in the air, and twisting around I could just about make out that he’d bitten a chunk out of the peel and apparently eaten out all the segments from inside. On getting home we found he’d just squished it so hard that the peel burst and the segments and juices had gotten all over him. So that’s why we only have one clementine left 🙂 As for the remaining fruit, the plan is to tonight cook the recipe in the CSA newsletter (Szechuan Clementine Chicken), but with pork instead of chicken.
  • Carambola – If it’s ripe enough, and hopefully fairly sweet, one or both of us will eat this as is. If it’s not so sweet, then we’ll need to be inventive… in other words, I’ve not a clue yet 🙂
  • Black Sapote – Wow, four sapotes this week, and all nearly the same size. Going on past history, it’ll be two weeks before these are ripe and usable, so these will be sitting on the counter until then.
  • Avocado – I suspect that June will take care of this in her usual way (with rice).

Photos by me, edited by June:

Cabbage

Cabbage

Lacinato Kale

Lacinato Kale

Garlic Chives

Garlic Chives

Red Round Tomatoes

Red Round Tomatoes

Clem

Clementine Tangerine(s)

Carambola

Carambola

Box 7

Black Sapote

Box 7

Brooks Avocado

Boxes 1 to 5 – Followups

Since we’ve got a habit of not using the entire box each week, but then (sometimes) using things in the following week(s), our verdicts on the missing items tends to get lost in the weekly cycles. Therefore, this post is a catchup for all those “we’ll eat it next week” things so far.

Box 1:

  • Roselle – This was used in the Roselle Experiments, which were both not very successful and a revelation that neither of us particular like the Roselle taste.

Box 2:

  • Green Pepper – sliced and frozen.
  • Yellow Squash – still at the back of the fridge somewhere, getting pretty elderly now so I suspect it’ll end up as trash unfortunately.
  • Black Sapote – these took forever to ripen, and when they did we were off in Mexico. They were overripe by the time we came back, to the point of leaking juices and getting mouldy, so they had to be thrown away. However, we did manage to salvage a little bit, which was enough for both of us to taste it – June thought it was very similar to a sweet avocado-ish flavour, whereas I thought it was fruitier than that.

Box 3:

  • Green Peppers – sliced and frozen.
  • Piper Betel Leaves – we used one of the leaves from the Box 6 selection, so we now at least know what it tastes like (very smoked sausage-like), and it appears the leaves are keeping well, so there’s plenty of time to come up with other ideas for this.

Box 4:

  • We missed Box 4 completely due to being in Mexico!

Box 5:

  • Asian Mix – added to the Beef & Aubergine curry that was ultimately abandoned (see Box 6 roundup).
  • Beets – we pondered using them during this week, but June’s reluctance meant we went with something else, so they’re still sitting there waiting. I just minutes ago mentioned the possibility of a cabbage & beet soup of some kind to June, and her response was “YERK!”, so we’re going to need some ingenuity to get a palatable use out of them.
  • Roma Tomatoes – we left them on the counter all last week and all this week, and they’re definitely looking ripe now. I still think that a stew of some sort would make good use of them, but no specific ideas yet.
  • Black Sapote – after learning from bad timing with the Box 2 black sapotes just how quickly they can go from underripe to overripe, we kept a much closer eye on these three. The smaller of the two ripened very quickly (just over a week), so we put them in the fridge to slow the process until the larger one had got to the same state. The larger one is now pretty much ripe as well, so I’m looking to find a use for them this week if possible.