Per my Summer Bucket List (which my brother has informed me that bucket lists and the use of the YOLO is enough to end a relationship for him. Whatevs), I pledged to shop at the Farmer’s Market at least 2 times per month. Well, I surpassed this goal completely because shortly after attending the farmer’s market, we joined a CSA. We love it. While the zucchini was a bumper crop this year and I made more zucchini chocolate cake than I would like to admit, I still highly recommend it. New Jersey is a great place for produce! New Jersians should be proud of the bounty their land yields: beautiful tomatoes, corn, peaches, eggplant, kale, potatoes, peppers and much much more.
We get our CSA from the Stony Hill Farm and highly recommend it to anyone looking for one. We get an email every week outlining what to expect in our box, storage suggestions, and even recipes for those items. Our pick up is in our town and very easy. We also added to our share a dozen fresh eggs from the farm.
The CSA has pushed my out of my cooking comfort zone, forcing me to cook with food that I wouldn’t usually purchase (hello, eggplant) and I have really added to my list of recipes! Listed below are a few recipes that have been made (some multiple times) this summer with our goods:
- Sautéed Ratatouille from Fine Cooking - a lot of work, fabulous outcome
- Salt and Vinegar Potato Salad from Joy the Baker - easy and great to take to a picnic, I have added bacon and bacon grease to the dressing with no complaints
- Chocolate Zucchini Cake from King Arthur
- Chocolate Zucchini Fudge Cake from Tasty Kitchen - yes, I made 2 different chocolate zucchini cakes in the course of a week. I made a lot of friends that week.
- Paleo Pizza from the Food Lover’s Primal Palate – the crust is made with eggplant!
- Stir-Fry Chicken and Bok Choy from Martha Stewart
- Southwestern Baked Corn from Eat, Live, Run – totally hits the spot, I substituted red pepper flakes because I didn’t have any jalapeños and it came out just fine
I leave you with this simple corn salad as a great summer side dish (oh summer please don’t go).
2 strips bacon, chopped
6 ears of corn with the kernels chopped off
pint of cherry tomatoes, cut in half
salt and pepper
1. Cook the bacon, rendering the fat. Once cooked, remove the bacon to drain and pour out the bacon grease so that only about 2 tablespoons remain in the pan. Save the poured out bacon grease for something else (green smoothie, anyone?).
2. At medium-high heat, add the kernels of corn, cooking until the corn gets some color on it.
3. Dump in a serving dish and add the tomatoes, salt and pepper to taste and any other seasoning.