My friends and I recently went in on a C.S.A farm share with Lancaster Farm Fresh Cooperative. For those of you who are not familiar, C.S.A stands for Community Supported Agriculture and helps support local farm economies. The share consists of around 7-12 items a week and the bonus aside from the tasty seasonal bounty is that you actually save money participating as opposed to shopping at the grocery store ( a lot of store bought organic produce is normally marked up 50 to 150%, and much of it isn't even local!). I highly recommend it. There are a variety of pickup locations around the city including Russet in Center City. At my house we're a few weeks into the share that consists at this point of dark greens, radishes, and my favorite, beets. Around here we are getting creative with the produce from the farms in Lancaster and although I have to admit, it was a bit of a challenge to incorporate so much of the weekly share into dishes, I now feel as though I am getting the hang of cooking seasonally.
Last night I had been craving spaghetti after watching Jessica Paré mention it about a 100 times the last few episodes of the latest Mad Men, that I decided I needed to have some. I wanted to make a simple sauce with vegetables from our share and a can of plum tomatoes. For this ragù I sautéed beets and their greens along with red russian kale. This creates a lovely pink color in the sauce and adds a rich earthiness to the sauce. Enjoy!
Plum Tomato & Beet Ragù Serves 2
2 spring onions, chopped
5 cloves garlic, minced
1-2 Candy Stripe Beet with greens, Diced
3 leafs Red Russian Kale
8 oz. can of Plum Tomatoes in water
1 sprig of oregano, rosemary, basil, and thyme
1/2 cup pasta water, if applicable
Sauté onions in olive oil until translucent. Add garlic diced beets and greens. Add tomatoes and simmer for 5 minutes. Add 1/2 cup pasta water and simmer for 10 more minutes. Enjoy atop pasta or on a crostini.