By Seth Fera-Schanes
My friend recently moved out of the city and I inherited the remainder of his Community Supported Agriculture (“CSA”) farm share. It is one of the best gifts a city resident can receive. Every Sunday, I pick up fresh vegetables and fruit that last throughout the week. I am getting my produce from Stannard Farms by Columbia University on 115th and Broadway which is part of the GrowNYC network
One of the problems I have encountered is having too much produce. Towards the end of the week, certain items might start to brown or wilt. In these instances, I have to find ways extend the life of my food.
There are three classic options to make meals out of items that have been sitting in the pantry for more than a few day:
The simple stir-fry. Chop the ingredients, throw in a pan and cook until softened (about 10 minutes.) Add a little lemon juice, hot sauce, soy sauce (really whatever makes you happy.) Serve and enjoy.
Roasting. Cut those potatoes and onions into wedges, cut the tops off the garlic, peel and chop the carrots and throw every thing into a pan. Drizzle with a little extra virgin olive oil, add some salt and pepper and roast at 375 F for about 45 minutes. Done and done.
Soup. It is November and soup is always a good idea; especially if you have a lot of leftover ingredients. Additionally, you can use a slow cooker to make your meal which is perfect for busy New Yorkers.
I recently made a soup and have included my steps below.
Take all your leftover CSA produce. I am not exaggerating here. I chopped everything and put it all in the pot. The soup was either going to be great or I could at least say I gave it the ‘old college try.’
In my refrigerator was kale, collard greens, tropea (which is like a Sicilian red onion), hot peppers, eggplants, potatoes, kohlrabi, shallots. These were chopped (and seeds from hot peppers removed)a and placed in the pot. I then added chicken stock, a can of diced tomatoes and a little water. I cooked for 7.5 hours on low heat and voila, a delicious, hearty Fall-weather meal.