Tag Archives: plums

What’s in the Box? #79

What's in the Box?

We made it through our first week in the “OC” and are finally beginning to feel settled in our new place.  We have enjoyed trips to the park, dips in the pool and lovely walks in the neighborhood.  I wish I had photos to share of all our adventures but my iPhone screen went grey last week and this time, I don’t think she’s coming back.  So for now we will all just have to use our imagination until a) she gets fixed or b) someone surprises me with the new iPhone for my birthday ;)…I’m hoping for the latter.

In the meantime, let’s just stay focused on the veggies.

Last week we had a total of 8 link ups and apparently it’s all about the party food.  Pizza, salsa, and tacos, all inspired by fresh and seasonal CSA bounty.  Gotta love the difference a box full of fruit and veggies can make in your life :)  Thanks to everyone for linking up and sharing their goodies with the rest of the group.  Keep ’em coming!

Now on to my first box from my new CSA…

What's in the Box? #79 - In Her Chucks

I am officially in grape heaven.  I am drowning in them…but that makes me SO happy :)  Harper and I snacked on a few on the way home from picking up our box and they tasted absolutely perfect!  I will be enjoying these for the rest of the week.

I also have more broccoli than I think my fridge can hold.  4 heads!  But with the way my family eats broccoli around here, that might last a few nights.

I am super excited to see an eggplant.  It has been a while since I have gotten one in my box and this is the first time I have ever received a white one.  There have been so many delicious eggplant recipes posted lately that I am dying to try but the hubs requested this meal, which I had completely forgotten about.  Looking forward to a delicious and clean dinner tomorrow night.

To celebrate the end of the work week, I have decided to make a taco salad for dinner Friday night.  So that lettuce, tomatoes and peppers will be perfect.

I got a ton of fresh herbs that I am excited to cook with this week.  Chives and a fragrant bundle of herbs de Provence will be the perfect complement to some delicious meals.

I am thrilled to have fresh plums and pluots in my box this week.  I am doing my best to stay away from sugar at the moment so no pluot crumbles this time around.  But besides snacking on them I am thinking about some savory dishes where I could put them to use.  Or of course, I could always make Kirsten’s muffins…yum!

Your turn: What are some of your favorite ways to incorporate your CSA fruits into simple and delicious meals?  Looking forward to drooling over your ideas.  

Linking up for the first time?  Click here for more info…and Welcome!

PS:  Don’t forget to tell your readers about the party by linking back to this post and grabbing the official “What’s in the Box?” button at the bottom of my blog.  Thanks!

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What’s in the Box? #46

Every week I get a bit too excited about my produce box.  But this week my excitement is inflated to the umpteenth power.  Why?  Well, they say a picture is worth a thousand words…

My amazing husband hooked it up big time for my 30th birthday and surprised me with a new juicer.  The man knows the way to my heart…through produce :)

This juicer has taken my fruit and veg consumption to a whole new level.  No need to worry about cooking up all my produce anymore (although I still plan on incorporating them in my daily meals).  Any and all leftovers can now be thrown into the juicer and made into a delicious and vitamin packed beverage any time of the day.  Yay!  I am officially in veggie heaven.

Speaking of veggie heaven, last week we had a total of 34 link ups!  That’s a whole lot of CSA goodness.  And from the looks of the links, autumn weather is rolling in.  There was a great variety of soups and stews this week.  Everything from good old Chicken Soup and Chicken Chili to Sagey Butternut Squash Soup and Roasted Garlic Beet Soup.  And who can forget that Eggplant and Lamb Stew?  Nothing like some delicious comfort food to warm your soul and please your tummy :)  Thank you to everyone who participated.  I appreciate your enthusiasm about this party and your ongoing support.  Hooray for veggies!

Now let’s take a look at my veggies…

The first item to catch my eye was that butternut squash.  Oh, how I love butternut squash.  Sure I like to fancy it up and make it the star of the show, but simply roasting it with some cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and salt and pepper is enough to make my taste buds sing.  Mmmmm.

You know what else makes my taste buds sing?  Cilantro.  Is there any flavor more bright and refreshing?  Unless of course you are part of the small group of people who find the taste and smell of cilantro reminiscent of soap and thus find this lovely herb to be repulsive.  According to Wikipedia, the reason for this strong aversion to cilantro is “likely genetic, with some people having no response to the aromatic chemical that most find pleasant, while simultaneously being sensitive to certain [offensive fragrances]”.  Interesting right?  Well, either way, the possibilities for this cilantro are endless.  Green rice anyone?

Speaking of bright and refreshing, that pretty much sums up my feelings for this grapefruit.  I love eating my grapefruit for breakfast in the morning with a tablespoon of ground flaxseeds sprinkled on top.  Talk about a breakfast of champions :)  As for the rest of the fruit…it already has a nice sized dent in it.  We have been snacking on the plums and apples all day.  I am hoping to get some sort of apple dessert made this weekend.  After all, what is fall without a warm apple treat topped with some vanilla ice cream *drool*.

Being that we were gone for most of the week, I wasn’t able to use up all of my spinach from last week’s haul.  Part of me wants to throw it in the juicer (which would be amazing!) but the other part of me wants to add it to this bunch, sauté it with some onion/garlic/shallot or all of the above and call it a day.  It makes such a lovely side dish.

Cauliflower makes for a pretty great side dish too.  Especially when you steam it using the new rice cooker that your brother and sister-in-law gave you, and then throw it into the new ricer your Uncle Joe got for you and top it with a slab of butter and a dusting of salt and pepper for some seasoning.  Why eat potatoes when you can enjoy faux-tatoes?  (ps: loving all my new birthday gifts…)

And then of course there is the mother of all sides…the side salad.  Guess whose mother makes the best salads around?  Yep, my mom!  Who also happens to be in town for a few weeks.  So in an effort to eat every last leaf of this lovely head of lettuce, I am going to have to ask my mom to whip up one of her magical side salads.

Finally, it’s all about those bright red tomatoes and peppers.  I have yet to make a batch of homemade tomato sauce this season and these tomatoes would be perfect for it.  I am also interested in trying some sort of roasted pepper sauce.  Tossing both with my new favorite obsession, quinoa pasta, topped with freshly grated parmesan.  Yum!

Your turn:  What are some of your favorite ways to use the fruits and veggies shown?  Any special recipe, tips or tricks you’d like to share?  Looking forward to reading your responses :)

Linking up for the first time?  Click here for more info…and Welcome!  PS:  Don’t forget to tell your readers about the party by linking back to this post.  Thanks!

PS:  Don’t forget to double your dose of fresh fruits and veggies by visiting this week’s Fresh Foods Link Up from Gastronomical Sovereignty


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What’s in the Box? #36

Hello last Wednesday in July…where has the summer gone?  But looking back on the last few months, I feel like I have made the best of my summer days.  Between blueberry picking, trips to the beach, park play dates and outdoor grilling, I have savored each moment of this lovely warm weather.  And as far as my fresh farm produce goes, I am enjoying every bite.  Especially all the delicious fruits.  They keep getting better.  And this week is no exception.  But before I get into everything I love about my current haul, let’s look back at the highlights of last week’s party.

A big thank you to the 63 link ups from What’s in the Box? #35.  Each one tickled my fancy.  I learned so much last week.  From how to freeze blackberries, to how to save a stalk of broccoli, to what in the heck is an Armenian cucumber?, my CSA knowledge continues to grow.  Who knew a link party could satisfy mind, body and soul?  Guess that’s the magic of fruits and veggies :)

And now on to MY fruits and veggies…

This week it is all about the nectarines.  Being reminded that the summer is coming to an end, each bite of these delicious gems will be celebrated and appreciated.  Yeah, that’s how much I love me some nectarines…to the last drop.  I am also excited that the pixie tangerines are back.  They are such a refreshing snack on these warm summer days.
Looking forward to a family gathering this weekend, I can’t help but bust out a crumble with these plums.  It is slowly becoming my signature dish and I love sharing its yummy goodness with others.  I will also be preparing a veggie platter with my spinach dip.  So the cherry tomatoes and carrots will work great as potential dippers.  And as beautiful as this fresh bunch of spinach looks, I will save that for dinner tomorrow night.  A quick sauté with some cloves of that garlic will be the perfect side dish.
I am loving this huge bunch of basil…with roots!  Which means it is the gift that keeps on giving.  Now to decide whether to plant it by my front door or down at the garden.  This could be the start of a small homegrown herb garden.  Pesto for days!
This lettuce is pretty darn fancy.  I attempted to use a few leaves on turkey burgers tonight and realized that they would work better as a salad.  Very curly and crispy which would work great tossed in a quick homemade vinaigrette.

Your turn:  What are some of your favorite ways to use the fruits and veggies shown?  Any special recipe, tips or tricks you’d like to share?  Looking forward to reading your responses :)

Linking up for the first time?  Click here for more info…and Welcome!  PS:  Don’t forget to tell your readers about the party by linking back to this post.  Thanks!


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What’s in the Box? #34

No matter how busy my life gets, Wednesdays always seem to get me focused and back on track.  Blame it on the fruits and veggies, but when hump day rolls around the fog seems to clear and things start to fall into place.  Having a CSA box to look forward to keeps me motivated to cook and always makes for some exciting menus.  And with all of the delicious recipes and ideas that have come through this link party, our family meals have been elevated to a whole new level :)

Our party continues to grow and I couldn’t be more grateful.  Last week we had a total of 56 link ups!  I appreciate all my loyal party goers and welcome those who are linking up for the first time.  When it comes to recipes and ideas on how to use your produce, we got you covered.  From breakfast, to lunch, to happy hour and beyond, there is no limit to how your CSA can feed you :)  So thanks everyone for keeping the inspiration flowing and making our tummies happy!

On to this week’s goodies…

Call me crazy, but I might be just a little too excited about this head of lettuce.  I usually pass over it and rarely give my lettuce the time of day.  But this head of lettuce is too pretty to ignore.  I wish I knew what kind it was because I plan on seeking this variety out in the future (maybe even growing a few heads in my garden).  It makes me want to have a fancy dinner party and invite all of my close friends over to enjoy a crisp salad dressed with a homemade vinaigrette.  Chilled salad forks included :)

And although I have been known to throw some grated carrots into my salads as well, I am still on my roasted carrot kick.  I also love my cauliflower roasted.  But then again, it seems as though I love ALL my veggies roasted :)

I was surprised at how fragrant my leeks were this week.  It was the first aroma that hit me when I opened up my box.  I was expecting onions with how strong the smell was, but I was excited to find leeks instead because I have had a taste for another homemade quiche.

With the holy trinity of summer fruit, I might be inspired to create something beautiful.  I plan on keeping it simple because enjoying the fruit “as is” happens to be my favorite part of summer.  The strawberries and nectarines will definitely be making an appearance in this week’s Sweets for a Saturday.  Which, by the way I was featured in last week…yay Gooey Cookies ‘n Cream Bars!  I will have to search through some of my plum recipes to see what pops out at me this week.  And while I am on the subject, here is the plum recipe I promised you last time.  I was hoping to post it on the blog, but was unable to snap a pic before dinner was demolished.  I always have good intentions, but it can be hard to juggle blog life with real life…real life always wins :)

Those little cucumbers are absolutely adorable.  After reading through some of your posts, it looks like most of you are pickling these kind of cucumbers.  I have never embarked on a pickling journey, but you all have inspired me.  I am not the biggest pickle fan myself, but I have friends who would appreciate some homemade pickles.  And what about relish…could I make relish?

And finally, dino kale.  At the start of my CSA journey, I would have cringed at the sight of kale.  But now I jump for joy.  After nearly two years into my CSA love affair I have collected some pretty awesome recipes.  Not to mention all the delicious ideas you all have shared with us.  Now, I can’t seem to think of a reason not to love kale!

Your turn:  What are some of your favorite ways to use the fruits and veggies shown?  Any special recipe, tips or tricks you’d like to share?  Looking forward to reading your responses :)

Linking up for the first time?  Click here for more info…and Welcome!  PS:  Don’t forget to tell your readers about the party by linking back to this post.  Thanks!


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