Yummy Recipes for Greens!

Week 3 of our summer CSA share! Clockwise from top left: escarole, joi choi, radishes, sage, lettuce, mustard greens, swiss chard, strawberries, curly kale

Our CSA member Denise from Centerville has shared some of her favorite recipes for using up her CSA box full of beautiful (if copious) spring greens. Read on for some yummy inspiration, notes from Denise are italicized. My favorite thing about her style (and a good trait of a CSA chef) is not being afraid to substitute what a recipe calls for with what is fresh and in season! Cheers to eating Out of the Box!


Pasta with Greens and Ricotta from Moosewood Restaurant Cooks at Home, 1994)

1 bunch watercress (about 1 cup chopped), tough stems removed [I used 1 cup of mustard greens]

1 bunch Swiss chard, tough stalks removed (about 4 cups chopped) [I used 4 cups of a mix of spinach and kale]

2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed [I used one green garlic, white & green leaves]

1 Tablespoon olive oil

dash of salt & pepper

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

3/4 cup ricotta cheese

1 lb pasta (fettuccine, penne, macaronic, fusilly, shells, etc)

grated Parmesan cheese or crumbled ricotta salata

chopped fresh tomato

toasted walnuts or pine nuts

Bring a large covered pot of water to a rapid boil.

While the water heats, rinse the watercress and chard well, shake off any excess water, and chop coarsely.  Saute the garlic in the oil for a minute, until soft and golden, taking care not to scorch it.  Add the damp greens and saute, stirring often, until they are wilted but still bright green.  Sprinkle with the salt, pepper, and nutmeg, and remove from the heat.  In a blender, puree the cooked greens with the ricotta until smooth and evenly colored.  Add more salt & pepper to taste.

When the water boils, stir in the pasta, cover and return to a boil.  Then uncover the pot and cook the pasta until al dente.  Drain the pasta and immediately toss it with the sauce in a warmed serving bowl.  Top with Parmesan or crumbled ricotta salata, tomatoes and/or toasted nuts.

Spinach Ricotta Pie from Moosewood Cookbook, by Mollie Katzen, 1992)

Crust for one pie shell


1 Tbsp butter/margarine

1 cup minced onion

1 lb. Spinach, stemmed and finely chopped (really, any mix of greens is great! And this uses up a lot of the CSA bags-o-greens)

½ tsp salt

freshly ground pepper to taste

1 tsp dried basil (or 1 Tbsp fresh)

1 lb. Ricotta cheese

2 or 3 beaten eggs

3 Tbs flour

½ cup (packed) grated sharp cheese of your choice

a dash of nutmeg (optional)

optional topping:

1 cup sour cream (lowfat is OK), lightly beaten


(Assemble the crust recipe of your preference, I like the Barefoot Contessa Ina Garten’s crust recipe.)

Preheat oven to 375F.  Melt the butter or margarine in a medium-sized skillet, add the onion, and saute for 5 minutes over medium heat.  Add spinach, salt, pepper & basil and cook, stirring, over medium-high heat until the spinach is wilted.  Remove from heat.

Combine all filling ingredients in a large bowl and mix well.  Spread into the unbaked pie shell.  For an extra rich pie, top with sour cream spread to the edges of the crust.  Dust generously with paprika.

Bake 40 – 45 minutes, or until firm to the touch at the center.  Serve hot, warm or at room temperature.

Spring CSA Week 3

Can you spot the surprise items in week 3’s share? (Hint: there are 2!)


Clockwise from top left:
Yellowstone Carrots
French Breakfast Radishes
Baby Lettuce
Curly Kale
Joi Choi

Our CSA member volunteers have lovingly termed this type of spread a Priapi Box O’ Greens. Indeed!

Use first: radishes, lettuce, claytonia, tatsoi, mushrooms (store best in a paper bag)
Store a bit longer (1-2 weeks): spinach, curly kale, joi choi, parsley
Good for a month or more: carrots

You will notice the tops of your radishes are beautiful, tender and fresh. One of our favorite preparations for a radish of this caliber is to: rinse your bunch of radishes without removing tops (we even leave their little roots on, but you can follow your heart on this one). Set a pan on your stovetop with a small amount of water covering the bottom. Cover and gently steam your radishes until greens wilt — be careful not to overcook! This will only take about 5-7 minutes on med-low heat. Remove from heat and drain water, garnish with a bit of butter and salt, and enjoy! This is a fabulous accompaniment to scrambled eggs for breakfast, lunch, or dinner! How are you getting creative in the kitchen this week? We would love to hear your favorite recipes from eating ‘out of the box’.

We would also like to remind you all to return your empty CSA boxes to your pickup location, or the farm. The waxed boxes are super durable and we reuse them many times. Not only is this earth friendly, it also helps keep the cost of the CSA down. Here’s a little video on how to properly collapse your box for transport.

Happy eating,
Vic, Mary, and Bethany