In the CSA box this week: spaghetti squash, zucchini, potatoes, daikon, and napa cabbage. There was also some bok choy, but we ate it all up before I could photograph it!
The spaghetti squash we like to roast and eat, well, just like spaghetti, drenched in red sauce. This is one of the only squash meals that Steve will happily eat. He introduced me to it, actually. I had never heard of such a thing before we met. The zucchini will become fritters, the cabbage will go into a stir fry and I haven't decided how to use the daikon yet. Suggestions?
As our CSA winds down I've started buying produce from our co-op again. Part of me is really sad about this transition every year. I love opening up our box and letting its contents inspire that week's meals. It gives me the motivation to stretch the boundaries of my comfort zone and try new recipes. I feel more grounded. Practical. It makes me want to pull my hair back, put on an apron and use up what's in the pantry.
But, the other part of me breathes a sigh of relief at being able to put meals on our menu based on our whims. We still try to eat what's in season, of course, but opening ourselves up to some select non-local items is pretty great too. This is the part of me that likes to peruse French cookbooks and make desserts. More decadent. Indulgent. It makes me want to pour a glass of wine to drink with dinner.
I love both of these sides. One or the other has been dominant at various points in time, as such things ebb and flow. When we first started cooking all of our meals at home, the French-cookbook-side was in charge. She made themed meals and Boeuf Bourguignon every year to celebrate Bastille Day. Then as we started to simplify our lives and to be more mindful of where our food came from, the grounded-practical-side emerged in the extreme with strict rules about local and in-season produce and cutting out completely anything processed.
Then we found balance.
The pendulum swings and settles at a comfortable, and wonderful, place in the middle.