June 12, 2012

Dance with the Radishes

Yesterday, I posted a fill-in-the-blanks to Facebook: “With beet greens I like to ________, and with radishes I _____________. #CSA”  I got two responses: “I suppose ‘compost’ and ‘compost’ isn’t the answer you’re looking for,” and “Party. Dance.”  Otherwise, crickets.

Now, far be it from me to judge if you like to party with beet greens, but since your CSA is probably delivering similar items, let me share what I did with mine.  The radishes I sliced and blanched for about 30 seconds.  This took the bite out of them and made them rather mild.  I’ll put them on a salad today to diversify the three varieties of salad greens that also came in my box.  I’d add the beets I roasted yesterday, but those didn’t make it very long.  Apropos of nothing, I peed pink for awhile last night.

Which brings us to the beet greens.  I washed the greens carefully by soaking them in clean water a few times, then chopped them up. Then, I cooked some whole-wheat orzo, defrosted some chickpeas I had in the freezer, and grated a chunk of Monterey jack cheese I had in the fridge.  I buttered a 9×13 pan and put the orzo, greens, chickpeas, and cheese into the pan, mixing in ¼ teaspoon of salt.  I melted a couple tablespoons of butter in a pan and pressed one garlic clove into it, cooking for maybe a minute, then poured the garlic butter over the mixture.  I mixed it all together, topped with parmesan cheese, and baked at 400 degrees for about a half an hour.  2 out of 3 Rosenbaum children loved it.

Party on, dude.

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  • Reply Rayne DeVivo June 12, 2012 at 2:39 pm

    Great! I have a 4×4 bed of beets and I’ve never known what to do with the greens (besides composting).

  • Reply melanie June 12, 2012 at 2:44 pm

    If i had seen the request i would have put RUN and HIDE, but only because beets make my throat start to swell shut (delightful), and therefore I am afraid of anything associated with a beet, and my sister is quite allergic to radishes, so I pretty well avoid them too, which makes little sense, except that my folks avoided both items because of us, so I just continue the trend.

  • Reply Devon June 12, 2012 at 2:49 pm

    This is why I stopped my CSA this year. Well, this and a couple of other reasons. I like to support local farmers. I don’t especially like getting boxes of stuff that require me to be creative in cooking, although there are times when I find it absolutely wonderful to cook things I’ve never tried before or to use things like beet greens in creative ways. It’s just not something that I really want to have to deal with on a typical Tuesday evening. I’ve decided that this year, I’ll spend what I was spending on my CSA at the farmer’s market.

    My other reason for doing this – the money I spend on produce, whether it’s through the CSA or the farmer’s market, comes from my monthly grocery budget. I need stuff from which I can actually make meals. Last year, I got strawberries and some more strawberries and then even more strawberries for the month of May from the CSA. I love strawberries, but in my house strawberries mean dessert and snacks. $80 worth of strawberries from the CSA also means that I’ve just spent far more of my grocery budget than I’d like on snacks and desserts.

    I love the CSA concept, but in purely practical terms it didn’t work too well for me. Given that I have a farmer’s market a mile from the house that is open every Wednesday and Saturday, I’ll go buy what I need/want there.

    • Reply emily June 12, 2012 at 6:30 pm

      I freeze the berries so we have them for oatmeal or muffins or soup in the winter.

  • Reply Lilian Nattel June 12, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    I’d love it too!

  • Reply Catherine June 12, 2012 at 6:36 pm

    I’m so honored to be quoted by you. 🙂 This is also why I stopped my CSA…but I’m loving my homegrown garden (no beet greens or radishes in sight!)

  • Reply nicole June 12, 2012 at 6:38 pm

    Sweet. There’s always a dance party in my kitchen when it’s prep time. Glad I could contribute;)

  • Reply De a June 12, 2012 at 6:53 pm

    That sounds fantastic! Sadly, for the next few months I am on a restrictive diet, so I’d have to leave out the orzo and the cheese. Guess what? It still sounds yummy. (I’m pretty hungry because what I can eat is not terribly filling.)

  • Reply Eileen Drennen July 1, 2012 at 10:47 pm

    beet greens are a recent revelation. softer and more subtle than collards or kale, they’re wonderful with as much of the lovely magenta beet stem as you can spare.
    wash the greens and stems well (two or three times in a big bowl of cool water). well, chop into 1-inch wedges. heat up some olive oil (1 tbsp? your call) and add chopped garlic (at least one clove; two if you have a lot of greens). once the garlic is just starting to get toasted, add the greens – stems first. heat will be medium high. when you add the freshly washed greens to the hot, garlicky olive oil, you’ll hear a delightful sizzle. stir, make sure the greens are evenly covered with oil, and reduce heat. cover. cook for at least 10-15 minutes – more if you want them softer. you can add more water if you need to, or broth. you don’t want soupy, but silken. add a can of garbanzo beans at the end, heat through. grate parrano cheese over it and enjoy. you can also add pasta if you like.

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