I’m thrilled to be back here, creating and assembling ideas and recipes for the delicious SIO produce. I hadn’t realized how much I missed seeing the share photo that SIO posts each week. What a joy! And beautiful joi (choi), this week!
Cooking with a CSA share can be a liberating and creative experience. The decision of what raw materials are best has been made for you so you are left with mixing and matching and experimenting and eating! Many of the recipes and ideas I will provide throughout the season will encourage you to adapt the quantity or spice level or substitute different vegetables and herbs, etc. Your taste and experience will be your best guide and I look forward to hearing about how you use or don’t use these recipes. And I always welcome feedback and suggestions so please be in touch at Katherine@cookwithwhatyouhave.com.
Happy spring and happy cooking!
Baked Kale, Tomato and Egg
Joi Choi “Garnish”
Simplest Joi Choi Stir-Fry
Joi Choi Yakisoba (Soba noodles in broth)
Homemade Mayonnaise and Green Garlic Aioli
Egg Salad with Green Garlic Aioli, Radishes and Arugula
Radish Top Note
If your radish greens are bright and fresh (which they likely will be) you can substitute them for herbs or other greens in your favorite pesto recipe or use half radish tops and half kale or arugula.
Baked Kale, Tomatoes and Egg
–inspired by Food52
This takes about 7 minutes to pull together and about 25-30 minutes to bake. Toast a little bread and you’re set for dinner (or brunch).
1 bunch kale, well washed, trimmed of any tough stems and cut into 1/2-inch ribbons
3-4 cloves green garlic, minced
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 14-ounce canned, chopped tomatoes (fire-roasted are great here but not necessary
1/2 cup water, broth or stock
½ teaspoon smoked Spanish Paprika (pimenton)
Salt and freshly ground pepper
4 eggs (or more–you’ll have room for 6 in the pan)
More good olive oil for drizzling
Good, toasted bread
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Put tomatoes and water or broth in a baking dish ( 8 or 9 x 13 works well) and stir in pimenton. In a large bowl, toss the kale ribbons with the vinegar, minced garlic, some salt and pepper and some olive oil. Stir this mixture into the tomatoes. Taste to make sure it seems well-seasoned and put in the oven and bake for about 20 minutes until bubbly. You can bake it longer if you want the kale to be softer as it will be tender but not truly soft at 20 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and make four indentations in the vegetables and crack the eggs into these. Season with sea salt and pepper and return to the oven. Bake until the eggs are cooked to your liking. Serve with good, crusty bread and a generous drizzle of the best olive oil you have. Enjoy!
Salads are so tender and bright this time of year. And the radishes this week add color and texture to the greens.
½ bunch radishes, scrubbed, trimmed and thinly sliced
Tablespoon of finely chopped chives or tarragon or green onion (if you have any of those on hand)
3 cups arugula, washed, well-dried and torn into bite-sized pieces
3 cups lettuce, washed, well-dried and torn into bite-sized pieces
½ cup toasted, salted sunflower seeds
2-3 tablespoons of the best olive oil you have
1 – 11/2 tablespoons red wine or champagne vinegar
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
Toss sunflower seeds with a touch of olive oil and a sprinkling of salt and toast in a 350 degree oven until golden and toasty smelling. Let cool. (I always roast more than I need to have on hand for the next week or so).
Put all the vegetables and seeds in a large salad bowl. Add dressing ingredients and toss well. Taste and adjust seasoning.
Joi Choi and Radish “Garnish”
I thought of another fun use for the fleshy stalks. Wash them well and cut as thinly as you can. Mix with radishes cut into matchsticks and dress with sea salt and rice wine vinegar for a delicious, fresh accompaniment to most anything.
Simplest Joi Choi Stir Fry
Wash the choi well and shake or pat dry. Cut into thin ribbons. Heat some sesame or peanut oil in a large skillet or wok. Toss in a little minced green garlic and a couple of pinches of red pepper flakes, salt and the joi choi. You can add the radish tops to this as well. Cook quickly over high heat, keeping the vegetables moving around. Finish with toasted sesame seeds and a little more toasted sesame oil if you’d like—though a little goes a long way so taste as you go.
Joi Choi Yakisoba (Soba noodles in broth)
This Japanese-inspired noodle soup is delicious one-pot meal and takes advantage of the joi choi in the share this week. If you happen to have a carrot or two on hand by all means cut it into matchsticks and add it to the pan with the mushrooms. And if you don’t have tofu you can use cooked chicken. You can use rice noodles or egg noodles instead of soba noodles as well. Adapt at will!
Serves 4, generously
1 8-ounce package soba noodles (or other noodles — see headnote)
2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
1 onion, cut into ¼-inch half-moons
5 cloves green garlic, trimmed and minced
5 shitake mushrooms, sliced (optional)
3 cups joi choi, chopped
4 cups water
1/4 – 1/3 cup soy sauce, tamari or Shoyu (I use the smaller amount)
½ pound firm tofu cut into ½ inch cubes (or cooked chicken)
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
3 -4 radishes, scrubbed and cut into matchsticks
2 green onions, thinly sliced
Prepare soba noodles according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
Heat oil in a soup pot and add onions and garlic; sauté over medium heat until onion begins to soften. Add mushroom and/or carrots (if using); sauté a few minutes more. Add water, tamari, tofu, and ginger. Bring to a simmer, cover and cook for about 8 minutes. Add joi choi and cook 2 more minutes. Taste and add a little salt if needed. Depending on the soy sauce you use you’ll probably need a bit of salt to bring it all together.
Portion noodles into deep bowls (you may have more noodles than you need so don’t feel you have to use them all for four dishes) and ladle over broth and vegetables. Garnish with the radishes and green onions.
Green Garlic Notes
I grow garlic so I can exclusively use it in its green form. I’ve been cooking with it daily for the last 8 weeks and it’s such a treat. Depending on how thick/tough the stalks are you’ll want to peel away a few of the outer layers and then mince some of the stalk as well as the cloves though this time of year they may be getting too big for that. I use green garlic anywhere I would use regular garlic but more generously. I like to cook it slowly in a little butter or olive oil or a combination and then add it or begin most any dish with it, soup, stew, pasta sauce, risotto, stir fry, aioli (see below).
Homemade Mayonnaise and Aioli
Omit the green garlic if you just want plain mayonnaise. Aioli is basically garlicky mayonnaise. Green garlic lends itself very well to this technique since it’s milder and sweeter than mature garlic. Traditionally it’s made with mature garlic. Homemade aioli takes about 5 minutes to make and keeps well for a week. I’ve always made it by hand but I know it works fine in the food processor too (though it has a stiffer consistency when made this way) so by all means use that if you want. It’s so delicious and endlessly useful and adaptable. Potato salad, deviled eggs, egg salad (below), sandwiches, spread for grilled fish, dressing for anything.
2 eggs yolks (best from a good, local, organic source as they yolks will not be cooked)
4-5 cloves green garlic, minced
Salt and pepper
1 teaspoon Dijon-style mustard
3 teaspoon lemon juice or more to taste
About 1 ½ cups oil. I use a combo of two-thirds neutral oil like Sunflower and one-third good olive oil. If you use all olive oil it tends to be too bitter and strong.
Whisk the garlic into the eggs yolks with the lemon juice, mustard and salt and pepper. Then very slowly start adding the oil, almost drip by drip for a bit until you things get nice and emulsified. Then you can start adding the oil in a thin stream, whisking all the while (or do the same in the food processor).
Traditionally aioli is served as a dip with raw and steamed vegetables. It’s good with chickpeas, potatoes, asparagus, etc. It’s also wonderful with grilled foods, in a sandwich or spooned in soup or pasta or used instead of mayonnaise in deviled eggs or used in the salad dressing, below.
Egg Salad Sandwiches with Radishes and Arugula
Rich egg salad is perfectly balanced with spicy greens like arugula.
4 barely hardboiled eggs, chopped (I cover eggs in cold water, bring to a boil, turn off heat and let sit in hot water for 8-9 minutes, then rinse in cold water and peel)
3 tablespoons homemade aioli (see above) or regular store-bought mayonnaise
2 teaspoons Dijon-style mustard
Salt and pepper to taste (you won’t need much since the aioli is well seasoned)
Any chopped fresh herbs you have on hand (optional- chives, thyme, parsley, tarragon, oregano are all wonderful)
Arugula, cut into thin ribbons
Very thinly sliced radishes
Good, crusty bread
Stir the aioli/mayonnaise and mustard together then fold in eggs, seasonings and herbs, if using. Taste and adjust seasoning.
Toast bread if on the older side or if you just like it that way (as I do). Spread generously with egg salad, top with sliced radishes and lots of chopped greens. Eat open faced or not. Drizzle with a little olive oil and a little salt (for the greens) if you’d like. Enjoy!