Maybe it’s just the novelty, but I’m in love with the CSA. It was so exciting to open the box and see what was inside, and then I had to figure out how to use some of this stuff. Bok choy + kohlrabi = Asian to me, so I went with this recipe that my sweet friend Laura turned up (she’s part of my CSA group and also got kohlrabi, which no one knew what to do with). This recipe used three of the treasures in the box, so I decided to try it. And I felt so adventurous because:
1. I’ve never cooked Asian food at home. (My mom used to make chop suey out of a can. I kid you not. I’m not even trying to pretend that counts. Gag. It’s a wonder I wasn’t scarred for life.)
2. I’ve never cooked with bok choy. (Though I have eaten it many times.)
3. I’ve never seen or heard of kohlrabi. (Called me sheltered if you must.)
Though the deck seemed stacked against me, I went for the above recipe, and it was a-ma-zing. Below is my final take.
Veggie Green Curry with Brown Rice
2 liberal servings
- Prepare rice according to instructions.
- Heat sesame oil in a medium sauté pan.
- Sauté onion with a pinch of salt for about 5 minutes, until softened and starting to turn golden.
- Stir in garlic, cooking for 1 minute.
- Add kohlrabi and sauté 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add bok choy and cook another 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add coconut milk, then fill can ¼ way with water and add to the pan. Stir in curry paste. Season with salt. Cover and simmer until vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Serve curried vegetables over rice, and garnished with scallions.
Next time, I think I’ll:
- Cook the rice properly. Or invite over a friend who knows how. I never make rice, so I wasn’t sure what to buy, and mine was not good. Ick.
- Add mushrooms and/or tofu and/or other veggies and/or seafood. You could put dirt in this sauce and it would taste good.
Side note: Did I mention that this dish was incredible? I couldn’t believe how easy and delicious it was. Plus, my kitchen smelled yummy-sweet like coconut milk. Mmm … I can’t wait make this again and try to improve it.
I did say two recipes, so here you go.
Lovely Strawberry Tart
36 honey graham crackers (9 sheets)
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons butter, melted
4 teaspoons water
6 cups small fresh strawberries, hulled and divided
2/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons sliced almonds, toasted
2/3 cup (about 5 ounces) 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, softened
¼ cup sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon almond extract
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- To prepare crust, place crackers in a food processor; process until crumbly. Add 2 tablespoons sugar, butter, and 4 teaspoons water; pulse just until moist. Place cracker mixture in a 9-inch round tart pan lightly coated with cooking spray, pressing into bottom and up sides of pan to 3/4 inch. Bake at 350° for 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool completely on a wire rack.
- To prepare topping, place 2 cups strawberries in food processor, and process until smooth. Combine strawberry purée, 2/3 cup sugar, and cornstarch in a small saucepan over medium heat; stir with a whisk. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to low; cook 1 minute. Remove glaze from heat. Cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally.
- To prepare filling, combine cream cheese, ¼ cup sugar, and extracts in a medium bowl; stir until smooth. Spread cream cheese mixture evenly over bottom of cooled tart shell.
- Combine the remaining 4 cups strawberries and lemon juice; toss to coat. Arrange berries over filling. Spoon half of glaze evenly over berries (reserve remaining glaze for another use). Sprinkle toasted nuts around edge. Cover and chill 3 hours.
Side notes & next time: Let me just say, this thing was a process. Not a difficult process, but there were many steps and dishes to deal with. And then, I went and screwed up several things. Like:
- The original recipe says to use a 9-inch dish. Well, mine was more like 12 inches.
- Also, I had to make the crust twice. (Of course twice, MKR.) I accidentally added 4 tablespoons of water instead of 4 teaspoons the first time, and it turned into a paste rather than a crumble. It was a delicious paste, but a paste nonetheless.
- The recipe says to use half the strawberry glaze and to use the rest “for another use.” I’m thinking, Why on earth would it tell me to do this? What other uses? (Although, in its glazey state it smelled and tasted like raw fruit roll-up matter. Incredible. I could make my own fruit roll-ups. But let’s not get too ahead of ourselves.) So, I used it all, reasoning that my pan was too big so maybe I needed the extra. The tart tasted delish, but it was kinda runny.
What a great first-time CSA experience! I tried new ingredients, new recipes, and a new style of cooking. I even made new mistakes. Sometimes those are happy accidents and sometimes they are flat-out wrong, but there’s always room for a great learning opportunity.