What's My Share? July 5, 2016

What’s My Share?

  • cantaloupe, 1
  • potatoes, 12
  • slicing tomatoes, 5
  • cherry tomatoes, 1 pint
  • red onions, 4
  • purple peppers, 4
  • cucumber, 1
  • basil, 1 bunch
Tupelo CSA members Emily and Rob Jarrett, with Maggie and Wilkes at Acadia National Park in Maine

Tupelo CSA members Emily and Rob Jarrett, with Maggie and Wilkes at Acadia National Park in Maine

Meet a Member

This week, meet CSA member Emily Jarrett and her family. Emily, her husband Rob, and their kids Wilkes and Maggie, live in Tupelo, and they have been with Native Son Farm since almost the beginning.

“We moved to Tupelo from St. Louis about the time Will was starting up Native Son,” says Emily, who remembers picking up her first share on the step’s of Will’s parents house. “I always have tried to stick to whole foods for my family, and when we arrived in Tupelo I knew the best way to get organic/whole foods and to support local business was to find a CSA.”

“I love that my children know where their food comes from and are aware of what is available during what season. Cooking out of a box that comes to us also means that we expand our palate and learn to love something new. I would have never known my daughter's favorite vegetable is bok choy if it hadn't come in a box one week. The rest of us never get to try it—she eats it all!”

Although the Jarretts have some “food challenges” in their family, Emily tries to prepare just one dinner per night—often with a simple variation. “Rob is a Pathologist and works long hours, so he often eats his dinner reheated,” she explains. “Two out of four of us do not eat meat, and my daughter has several food allergies: no gluten, no dairy, no tree nuts, no sesame, no shellfish, no banana.”

“We mostly eat at home. Eating out in Tupelo is too difficult with so many limitations. So I cook a lot, though with a rising 6th grader and a rising 4th grader, the weeknights are busy. There is a lot more fixing and less complicated cooking. I tend to start with cookbooks. (The Moosewood cookbooks and Sarah Kramer's books, like La Dolce Vegan, are my go-to cookbooks.) And then, I tweak recipes to fit our needs. I also rely on some bloggers like milkfreemom, cookieandkate, and smittenkitchen.”

Here are some of the ways the Jarretts made use of their share last week, a long with some tips for storing produce.

Storage Tips

The basil goes into a jar of water right next to my sink and stays fresh for at least a week. Cherry tomatoes stay on the counter and get eaten as a snack in less than a day. Cucumbers also get gobbled up just sliced as a snack. My daughter loves her cucumbers with a dash of rice vinegar on them. Celery tops go out to the chickens in the back yard—they love the scraps from Native Son as much as we love the veggies! Then I wrap the celery stalks in foil. Celery stays fresher, longer wrapped in foil. The next morning I will pull a few stalks out and cut them and keep them in a container in the fridge for random fridge grazing that happens all summer! I'm trying to channel my inner Jana Eakes and eat more celery, but most of it gets eaten by my kids. Cantaloupe gets cut up into chunks, too. Everyone is always happy to eat fruit if its ready to go. 

Celery stays fresher, longer wrapped in foil.

What’s Cooking?

Tomato Pie

For dinner Friday I put most of our share to work. Tomato Pie is my husband's all-time favorite dinner, and we like our tomato pie simple. Our daughter Maggie got a simple variation with a gluten-free crust and no cheese. I served this with green beans and roasted potatoes. For the green beans, just snap and steam them. Roast the potatoes with a little olive oil, salt, and pepper.

Cantaloupe Sorbet

We still had some cantaloupe left, so we made Cantaloupe Sorbet, an easy dessert—and diary free.

Forget the Tahini! Baba Ghanouj

I saved the eggplant for this version of Baba Ghanouj. I had avoided this dish for a long time because it always calls for tahini (sesame!) but when I came across a recipe that used peanut butter instead, it became a family favorite. My daughter and I ate the whole batch. I used this recipe, and then added a tablespoon of peanut butter.

Thai Red Curry Recipe with Vegetables

Even though it was super hot outside, I was craving some sort of Thai Red Curry, my kind of comfort food. I put the red onions and bell peppers (as well as some leftover kale from a previous share) to work in this dish. Oh, so divine!

Thanks, Emily!

How do you make the most of your CSA share? Email us your recipes and meal ideas to nativesonproduce [at] gmail.com, and let us know if you’d like to be featured in our “Meet a Member” profile.