Personal Experiences With The CSA Produce Box

We asked some CSA participants about their experiences cooking with their farm-fresh, organic produce. Below are some responses and new recipes. We would love to share more of your stories next week. Please send us your experience to csalosangeles@yahoo.com, and we will print them next week.

From Dana S (of the nursery and elementary school):
I have a confession to make: I am not a fruit and vegetable lover. My favorite foods are pasta, bread and chocolate. However, I do like to cook, and I do make an effort to serve healthy food to my family. So, I decided to give the CSA produce box a try.

Every time my box arrives, I feel like an Iron Chef who has to cook with new secret ingredients that I have never cooked with before. I try to divide and conquer by making a game plan for each item. I have risen to the challenge. Yael’s cooking class got me started, and now I am cooking new dishes with new ingredients. The quality and freshness of the produce is so high that the food tastes so much better. Who knew that fruits and vegetables could be so tasty? Now I am a convert.

My kids, ages 4 and 8, are into the CSA box as well. They love to cook with me and are curious about what new dishes will be on the dinner table. The CSA produce has sent my cooking in a whole new direction, which my whole family is enjoying. Plus, we are all eating more greens!

I feel a sense of accomplishment as my family savors healthy, tasty dinners. I felt so inspired that I created the CSA blog along with the committee. I hope the new format with a recipe index helps your family enjoy the produce box as much as we have.

Here are some of our new favorite recipes:
Red Leaf Salad with Roasted Beets, Oranges and Walnuts
Broccoli Pesto Pasta
Spinach and Cheese Strata

From Julie H. (of the nursery school):
One of the multitude of things that I am grateful for, living in California, is the abundance of fresh fruit and veggies available year round and the numerous farmers’ markets that we have access to nearly everyday of the week! Both my girls since birth have frequented most of the farmers’ markets at some point and hopefully have begun to have instilled in them the value of eating fresh, locally sourced, seasonal, organic, and delicious fruits and veggies.

The value of the CSA program for me has been that added convenience of having an extra delivery of goodies. If I somehow miss a weekly trip to the local farmer’s market, I know I’m covered. Also, I usually tend to get my familiar things and with the CSA boxes I have tried and been “forced” to try things that I would have never bought on my own. Who knew sauteed pea tendrils with a little olive oil and salt and pepper could be so delectable (and nutritious)?!

Opening the box together with my kids is always a treat as we survey the bounty of what was delivered that particular week. I love and am so appreciative that our school has embraced this very important movement of supporting local farmers and educating our community on the importance of organic fruits and veggies. Thank you to Yael and the other fabulous volunteers for making this happen, I honestly think it is one of the most important programs at the school.

I have just begun to explore the blog which is quite impressive (awesome job, Dana!!). Cannot wait to try some of these recipes and love the tips and resources!

Here are a few of my personal favorite recipes that are tried and true:
Green Eggs
Ginger Carrot Soup
Lentil Soup


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