Summer CSA | Week 1
In this week's box: oregano, spinach, sorrel, lettuce, radishes, and asparagus
Our four week spring CSA has ended and we're just starting week one of our summer share! Steve is really hoping the asparagus ends soon and since we're having a hard time keeping up with what we're getting in our share, we've stopped harvesting from our own patch. We do love it, really, and we wait all year for asparagus season to come. But after a solid month, we're ready to move on.
The greens and radishes continue to make appearances in nightly salads. Crisp lettuce with balsamic is one of my absolute favorite things about summer.
Half of the spinach and all of the asparagus went into a Lemon Chicken, Asparagus & Spinach Skillet with Couscous. I've been experimenting more with single skillet meals. Right around the middle of June (now, that is) I put a moratorium on turning the oven on and do all our cooking on the stove top. This has never been a problem, really, but I'm looking to simplify and streamline. I always try to include a leafy green and at least one other vegetable along with our protein for every meal. Some nights this means that I'm using every burner and dirty four different pans. Steve gets home late, so I'm on my own to cook. Add to that the fact that I have a two-year-old to entertain and, well, single skillet meals sound pretty good these days.
This one came together in about 45 minutes and used only two pans. Win.
Last year | Garlic Scape Stir Fry
Two years ago | Beef and Chinese Cabbage Stir Fry
Lemon Chicken, Asparagus & Spinach Skillet with Couscous
1/2 lb. bacon, chopped
1 lb. asparagus, chopped
1 C. whole wheat French couscous
3/4 lb. chicken, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 TBS. whole wheat flour
1 C. chicken stock
zest and juice of 1/2 a lemon
6-8 oz. fresh spinach, washed, stemmed, and torn into bite-sized pieces
fresh parsley, chopped, to garnish
1 TBS. extra virgin olive oil
1. In a very large skillet with tall sides, fry the bacon pieces over medium heat.
2. While the bacon cooks, bring 2 cups of water to a boil in a sauce pan. Place the asparagus in a colander (or some other steaming contraption), place on top of the sauce pan, cover, and steam for 3 min. Immediately rinse with cold water to stop the cooking. Reserve the steaming water.4. Once the bacon is crispy, use a slotted spoon to remove it from a pan to a paper-lined plate. Leave the bacon grease in the pan and return it to the heat. Sprinkle salt and pepper on the chicken pieces and put them into the pan. Cook until white on all sides, about 6 min.
5. While the chicken is cooking, pour one cup of the asparagus steaming water into a glass measuring cup. Dump the rest out (or reserve it in a bowl, let it cool, and use it to water your plants). Return the one cup to the pan. Add 1/2 tsp. of salt and bring to a boil. Pour in the couscous, stir, cover, remove from heat and let sit undisturbed for 15 min.
6. To the chicken add the onion and garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Cook until transparent, about 8 minutes.
7. Sprinkle the flour over the chicken and onion mixture. Cook for 1 minute. Pour in the chicken stock. Bring to a simmer and then reduce heat.
8. Add the asparagus to the pan along with the lemon zest. Stir in the spinach leaves. Continue to cook until wilted, about 4 minutes. Add lemon juice. Taste and add more salt if necessary.
9. Use a fork to fluff the couscous and drizzle a little olive oil over it to prevent clumps.
10. Scoop a big pile of couscous into a shallow bowl and top with the skillet mixture. Sprinkle bacon and parsley over it all.
Time: 45 minutes
Serves: 4 adults