Summer 2011 CSA: Week 1

After 10 months of a CSA subscription, we had a two month break. I’m lucky enough to live somewhere that has access to produce year-round and can have a locavore diet, but it’s been a long two months.

Our first week back we didn’t get much variety, but we still got a good share. We got a nice bag of spicy arugula and what I think is watercress, three butternut squash, about eight yellow squash and a big bag of black eyed peas.

With the recent heat, I wanted to display the fresh ingredients in an easy, light, cool way.

Gazpacho with pesto and ricotta toast

I made a cold gazpacho soup, something I’ve never made but have wanted to try. I put in only half a cucumber (it’s all I had) and replaced the difference with yellow squash. Eating it cold with all the vegetables together really brought out their flavor. It was more like a fresh salsa or salad as a meal. (Maybe this was because I think I chopped the veggies too much in the blender. But it still tasted great, and I’ll remember a lighter touch for next time.)

Paired with toasted bread topped with homemade ricotta and arugula and watercress pesto, it was a light summer recipe featuring great seasonal ingredients. It was one of those meals I kept thinking about long after I was finished, which is always a good sign.

Gazpacho

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped (about 6 cups)
  • 1 cup chopped red onion
  • 1 large red sweet pepper, seed and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 2 teaspoons chopped, seeded jalapeno, or to taste
  • 6 tablespoons fresh herb (either coriander, dill, chervil, parsley or basil work); coarsely chop
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime or lemon juice
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 1/2 cups peeled seeded and cubed cucumbers

Directions

  1. Blanch tomatoes in large pot of boiling water for 30 seconds. Drain in a colander. Cool under cold running water. Peel tomatoes. Halve tomatoes crosswise. Working over small bowl, squeeze gently to extract seeds. Discard seeds. (If tomatoes are not flavorful, use either plum tomatoes or good quality canned tomatoes. Italian canned tomatoes are usually flavorful.)
  2. Combine all ingredients except 2 tablespoons of the herb in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to a coarse texture. Transfer to a bowl and taste. Sprinkle remaining herbs over each serving.
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3 thoughts on “Summer 2011 CSA: Week 1

  1. I think I had a bad gazpacho a while back and I havent been able to shake it. I think the trick will be to make it myself via your recepie!

    • Ohhh, if you do, let me know what you think. I’m not sure if I had ever had gazpacho before, so I didn’t have anything to compare it with. It almost was like a fresh salsa (which I love)! Good luck.

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