Wednesday, July 30, 2008

CSA Week 7

CSA Week 7 Haul. July, 2008. photo Jenonymous/Group News Blog.
CSA Week 7 Haul. July, 2008. photo Jenonymous/Group News Blog.

Publisher's note: If you're not clicking Jen's photos and viewing them full size, wow, are you missing out on the good stuff... Big, bad-ass, and beautiful.

My Fridge Runneth Over

To quote the poet laureate Warren Ellis, fuckity-fuck and away we go. Sorry, dear readers, but I am NOT in a great mood tonight, I'm tired, and I have too much cleaning up and lunch prep work to do before bed. However, I can't go to sleep until I finish my updating my work laptop for a 9AM presentation tomorrow, which I am giving largely for the benefit of someone whom I KNOW will skip out on the meeting, as the person who could discipline him for said behavior has already announced that HE'S not attending for sure. So I'm looking at a 6 AM wakeup call for nothing. That's after going to bed at almost 1 AM last night—Sundays are always a "fucked sleep cycle" night for me to begin with. Like an IDIOT, I also thought that I could play Age of Conan for "just half an hour before bed." Yeah. I admit, I'm addicted. What most people would call "MMORPG level grind" I call "stress relief by getting to kill loads of things in very graphic ways, including full-on decapitation and organ removal." I also happen to play a Dark Templer, which adds to the tanking/killing fun and special effects. But I digress.

I'm also mad at myself for feeling wimpy for whining about the effort required to pack lunch as opposed to eating the expensive, high-fat crap that I usually buy at the office. I always love my salad come noontime but I am so damn tired at night. Also, today I had crap I shouldn't—had some Death Wish Cake at an office party, two small chocolate cookies, and a peach smoothie for dinner tonight. Oh well. Can't be too too hard on myself.

At the same time, though, people at the office are starting to comment that I've really trimmed down. I know that's not a goal in and of itself but damn it's nice to start to try to get a little bit of my "fit" shape back. On top of that, my nails have gotten a LOT harder, which is just weird. I take vitamins already; I guess this is one of those "unknowns" that the macrobiotic crowd talks about. Can't put every last little mystery organic compound in a pill I suppose…

Having said that, I have a BIG listing for you guys this week. Last week I took possession of:

  • Summer Savory
  • Italian Broadleaf Parsely (HUGE leaves—each over an inch broad and almost 1.5" long)
  • 1 lb. Yellow Wax Beans
  • 1 bag Snow Peas
  • 1 good head of Radicchio
  • Some sort of dark curly green Lettuce
  • Multicolored Carrots
  • 9 Black Plums
  • 9 Big Peaches
  • 3 lb. (!!) of Yellow Sugarplums
  • 2 thin Pork Shoulder Blade Cuts (frozen, for panfrying)
  • 1 Lavender Crotini (mini)
  • 1 lb. smoked Frer Fumant Cheese
  • .75 lb. organic Liverwurst
  • 1 BIGASS loaf of Black Pepper Parmesan Bread
CSA Week 7 Sugarplums. July, 2008. photo Jenonymous/Group News Blog.
CSA Week 7 Sugarplums. July, 2008. photo Jenonymous/Group News Blog.

Enjoy the total food porn. Pay special attention to the cuteness of the innocent sugarplums, all coyly huddled together, and the purple carrot action.

CSA Week 7 Carrots. July, 2008. photo Jenonymous/Group News Blog.
CSA Week 7 Carrots. July, 2008. photo Jenonymous/Group News Blog.

Let me wax rapturous over the lavender crotini for a minute. Crotinis are little soft cheeses, which are not too aged. This one was small—about the size of the bottom half of a small cupcake—and rolled in lavender. It has a light, floral taste—like an herb garden whipped into the freshest unsalted cream cheese. Imagine a fine chocolate truffle, without the chocolate—just pure milkfat, whipped up with field-fresh herby goodness. It melted in my mouth and on the parm bread.

On delivery night I had that (crotini on bread), two smallish carrots (which didn't make it on to the cutting board—ate em while prepping other stuff), some of the Frer Fumant, a few TEENY sugarplums (the ones in the pic are very weensy—use parsley leaves for reference) and a good grip of broadleaf parsley, which was mild enough to eat as-is, washed. I also cracked open a good bottle of white wine and had some of that.

CSA Week 7 Dins. July, 2008. photo Jenonymous/Group News Blog.
CSA Week 7 Dins. July, 2008. photo Jenonymous/Group News Blog.

Another item that I made during the week (and still have much of) is quick no-cook stone fruit chutney, stolen from Bon App├ętit Magazine. The recipe:

--3 cups (after chopping) of mixed stone fruit, stoned and sliced (I used the last of my cherries, peaches, the red plums, and sugarplums).

--3 Tablespoons of mild white vinegar of some sort (original recipe called for white balsamic vinegar which I just can't be bothered with; I used my lavender vinegar)

--6 Tablespoons white sugar

--1/2 teaspoon of mild curry powder (I used a mild Mughali one with a huge saffron content).

Mix. Let sit out at room temperature for at least an hour, covered, for everything to meld/macerate/get over itself. I have already used this on chicken, and on yogurt. It would make a brilliant BBQ sauce also. Just do it.

I also made a small experimental batch of lemon thyme vodka. AMAZING, especially when mixed with a mild iced tea (enjoying a cold glass of English Breakfast Tea from Harrod's and this in it right now in fact).

One memorable dins that I made this week was my Savory Summer Simmer from last week, re-heated, over radicchio, with some high-quality Italian canned tuna on top and a whole-wheat flatbread on the side. Amazing.

Otherwise, this was the week of Starting to take Salads to Work in my Little Salad Box Thingie.

I also took delivery of my Amazing yet Somewhat Bulky (but very utilitarian) Lunch Box.

It's a pain in the ass having to prep something every night, but the results are worth it—not only is it better for me and a hell of a lot tastier once I actually sit down to eating, but it uses up the CSA stuff faster—otherwise half this stuff would rot.

Anyway, I need to go wash out the blender, clean up from dinner prep, make my salad for tomorrow, and continue working on my presentation for work. When I'm done I may play Age of Conan—but for only half an hour. I swear. :D