Sunday, June 16, 2013

Weekend Cooking 6/16

Each weekend, Beth Fish Reads hosts Weekend Cooking.  This is perfect for me since I love food and cooking almost as much as I love books!

Not a lot of time today for blogs, since it is Father's Day, but I haven't written a Weekend Cooking post in a couple of weeks and wanted to share my joy in the change of seasons. Specifically, it is now officially CSA season! That's Community Supported Agriculture, a wonderful program available all over the country (and maybe overseas, too?) where you buy a share of a local farm. Then, each week during the season, you stop by to pick up your share of that week's fabulous harvest. Our local CSA is an organic farm run by the local nature center, and you just can't beat those just-picked, super-fresh, organic veggies!

This was our second CSA week of the season - the shares are relatively small so far (we only get a half share) and heavy on leafy greens, which I love but my kids aren't thrilled about! My cooking style changes when it's CSA season. Instead of planning meals around the grocery store's weekly specials, I see what's in our CSA pick-up on Tuesday and then look for recipes to use the yummy fresh produce. This week, we got snow peas, lettuce, spinach, kale, spring onions, radishes, sorrel (still trying to figure out what to do with that one!), and even a few ripe strawberries. The fruit is a new addition.

So, with my non-green loving teens in mind, here are a few of our dinners from this week (I'm no fool - I sauteed the kale and ate it for lunch by myself one day!):

We had the snow peas (plus some from last week) alongside Pork Piccata and Whole Wheat Noodles. My whole family loves Chicken Piccata, but I had a pork tenderloin in the freezer, so I used this recipe with pork - it was delicious!

Lettuce is always a challenge because my kids are just not big salad eaters. I made another Cooking Light recipe, Black Bean Taco Salad with Lime Vinaigrette, which was a hit last summer. Of course, my sons still complained when they saw we were having salad as a main course, but even they had to admit this was good. Or in their words, "Well, if you have to eat salad, then this one isn't that bad." Believe me, that's high praise!

To make it up to them, I made one of their favorite meals the next night, Penne with White Beans, Sausage, and Spinach. This is one of my own creations - pretty much exactly how it sounds, a very simple dish with a base of sauteed onion, bell pepper, and spinach, with diced tomatoes added along with the whole wheat penne, beans and some sliced Trader Joe's sun-dried tomato chicken sausage. This is one of the few dishes with spinach in it that they actually love!

Tomorrow night, I will attempt to hide more spinach in an easy frittata, with shredded potato, pancetta, and spring onions along with finely chopped spinach. Wish me luck!

Hope you are enjoying your food and cooking this week!


  1. Our CSA has started too. We get a full share, even though we're only two people--we love our veggies!

    I'm fortunate that my husband loves salads, and we eat them twice a day. But that taco salad sounds really yummy as does the penne dish.

  2. I just pinned the Black Bean Taco Salad with Lime Viniagrette recipe - my family will love it! We also have a similar recipe for White Bean and Sausage Penne that is a cold-weather favorite.

    We visit a Farmers Market weekly, but would really love to sign up for a CSA share. It would be a fun challenge to use all the produce each week.