Monday is for Menu Planning

April 20, 2009 at 11:16 am

Rob Gardner

To set the agenda for this week’s meals, we have to look back at last week’s meals.  Because Thursday’s CSA box came with three bunches of kale, and we had the previous week’s turnip greens and even a bunch of kale from the week prior (slightly tired greens can withstand the big pot), we had extra for Friday.  Because Friday I grill-smoked 13 pounds of Wettstein pastured turkey (that’s a half a turkey) and used part of the grill to work up the remaining delicata squash; because my wife, we fight constantly about her need to cook for a family of 12, made her beans in buckets, and there was also cole slaw from Thursday green’s night, we have food.  We did manage, us and another family of four, to finish a bowl of green sauce and a pan’s worth of corn bread.  Did I mention the slices of pickled tongue yet?  We have plenty of leftovers to work around for this week’s meals.

And turnip pickles to work with.  Our CSA box contained four nice sized “classic” turnips, you know the ones with the purple ring around the top. My wife used Claudia Roden’s recipe for Middle-Eastern style pink pickles.  She ran out of canning jars before she ran out of turnips.  The one remaining turnip I’ll probably grate and serve as a salad with oil and garlic one meal.

Besides the kale and turnips, our CSA box came with two heads of leaf lettuce.  I imagine at some point this week, my wife and I will have a Mado-esque salad of the tongue, the lettuce, some Wettstein eggs and some attic fingerlings.  The box came with several red norland potatoes, good for a potato salad with the aioli still in our fridge.  Also from Vicki’s storage vaults came onions, maybe three large yellow ones and a few large red ones too.  (I’ve had to toss some of the onions we’ve stored ourselves but between the ones that have lasted, Vicki’s and a strategic Madison purchase a few weeks ago, we are strong in onions.)  Finally, the box came with two heads of savoy cabbage, which I have not figured out exactly how to use.  There’s half a Whole Foods Indiana cabbage also in our bins.

A day after our third CSA box came in, I stopped by Cassie’s Green Grocer, mostly looking for herbs and also some ar…, I mean rocket.  I found a ton of NW Indiana ramps (don’t fear the price, a half a pound of ramps is too much.)  I’m thinking of grilling them.  No herbs or rocket though.

I mentioned my foray to GCM on Saturday here.  After the market, the  local family day-dreamed away: my wife of evening plans for a movie, a daughter of the bat mitzvah cake sample we picked up; me, I dreamt of my Bennison’s ciabatta.  Thing is, due to some unforeseen events, we missed our window.  Now the bread needs to be toasted, bruschetta one night, probably with the beans.

As you can see, there’s a lot to work with.  I’m not wedded to many specific dishes.  Maybe a big salad here or there, soup from the turkey carcass…if you have any ideas for me, please let me know.