Leaf Top Soup

16 Jun

If I had any direct interaction with you this week or last week this will be old news because this was literally all I talked about: My first CSA pick up of the season was Thursday. This is my first CSA and folks, let me tell you, they’re amazing.

I paid $320 in the winter, this went directly to my farm- I know it’s not “my farm” but I call it that. And I call Farmer Zaid when he emails about the cucumber beetles he’s worried about or how wonderful the mint looks, “my farmer.” Anyways, so I paid this amount and now from last Thursday until late November I go to a community center on 28th and Madison once a week and pick up my farm shares. I also have to volunteer once. Which I’m completely pumped about because I’m going to wear my overalls. Even though it’ll probably be, you know, on 28th and Madison, not on Farmer Zaid’s cozy farm upstate. Which I literally imagine in my head like Babe’s farm from yeah, the movie Babe with that lovable pig.

What could be more fun than every week getting the weirdest assortment of vegetables and then figuring out how to utilize them most efficiently, healthily, and deliciously? And is it just me or is everyone getting more involved in all this? I spent two hours hanging on an outdoor patio at some cool Williamsburg bar at 2 in the morning on Saturday discussing garlic scapes and frittatas (what up Soupie-Julie?)

But it’s not all being healthy and conscious and eating more deliciously, it’s also about being cheap. All my life I felt like I really missed my time by not being born Depression-era. There is something about this weird old nightgown I should stop wearing and thin brown hair where I feel like, slap some dust on my cheeks and I’m Hooverville-hot (seriously, what’s happening to me?). EITHER WAY, I was walking home from my writing class in Chelsea last night when a classmate, remarking on my tote overflowing with beet greens and chard, which I had sitting at my desk all day from the Union Square farmer’s market (this is becoming my soup-blog-unravel post, I swear), asked if you could eat beet greens– and you know, I just went off. Because it’s so wild what you can eat. We can eat so many different parts of plants that I never realized before and they are so healthy for you. Like this soup I’m making right now, it has beet greens, RADISH GREENS, field greens, chard. Beat that. When Winston reads this tomorrow I can already imagine his face, like Just Cool Down Mary, where he puts up both hands and sort of slowly backs away from me as if I were a raccoon he stumbled upon during the day.

Yeah, so this soup recipe is great. It’s my go-to soup/stew I make when I’m overwhelmed with vegetables and greens because it’s always good. And I’m adding my roasted radish recipe. Two for one! Alright, I have to get a beer and freaking relax. Enjoy.

Roasted Radishes & Friends

  • Preheat oven to 400
  • Peal and cut a bunch of beets to bite sized pieces, cut radishes in half, cut an onion in chunks
  • Throw everything in a baking dish, dose in olive oil, throw on salt, dried thyme (1-2 teaspoons), pepper and a sprig of rosemary
  • Let roast for 45 minutes, or until you can easily stick a fork in the beets.
  • Enjoy!

Leaf Top Soup

  • Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a big soup pot over medium-low heat
  • Add 1 onion chopped, let cook for 2-ish minutes
  • Throw in 1-bunch of red chard stems, garlic, red potatoes all chopped up into bite sized pieces let cook for 5 or so minutes
  • Throw in 2 cups of barley, cover in water (this is really your call if you want more of a stew less water if you want more of a soup more… just check on it as the barley absorbs and add water accordingly throughout)
  • Add 2 vegetable bullion, salt, pepper, at least 1 tspn of thyme, 2 bay leaves
  • Let it come to a boil then bring it down to low heat and let cook for 20 minutes
  • If a fork goes into the potatoes easily add greens. Really whatever you want. I added radish, beet, field greens and chard. But it doesn’t make any difference…
  • Let cook for another 10 minutes until the greens have wilted.
  • If you have time you can have it simmer for longer, it’s been simmering here for the last hour as I’ve written this partially insane blog post.
  • Throw on parm cheese if you feel like it, you might also like a squeeze of lemon.
  • Enjoy!

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