2014 Spring CSA Share Week #5, May 14th

This week’s CSA share contains some exciting new things!  You’ll find rhubarb, the first kale and radishes of the season, dried black turtle beans and Penn’s Corner’s new applesauce!

Keep reading for tips and recipes to help make the most of this week’s share.


Ah, rhubarb.  ‘Tis is one of those polarizing foods that people seem to love or hate.  Throughout my entire childhood and adolescence it seemed to me that no one had anything nice to say about rhubarb so I never had any desire to try it.   I decided I didn’t like it because no one else did.  Then I joined my first CSA.

The first time this strange looking stalk showed up in my box I was somewhat annoyed.  I wanted food!  I wasn’t looking for strange, obscure things I needed to figure out how to use.  In all honesty, I think that particular rhubarb sat in my fridge until it got brown and mushy and I threw it out.  Then I got more rhubarb.

A friend of mine mentioned she loved rhubarb.  Surprised to hear anyone make such an outlandish claim, I asked her what she liked to do with it.  She said she simply chopped it up, cooked it with a little sugar and ate it on yogurt.  That didn’t sound to difficult so I decided to give it a try.  I was pretty sure I was going to provide further evidence that rhubarb is terrible and shouldn’t be eaten, but I was very pleasantly surprised.  Rhubarb is really good!  No lie.

I’m here to tell you that rhubarb has become one of my favorite things.   It’s tart and tangy, and when sweetened with a little sugar or honey it compliments all kinds of foods.  I’ve cooked it with strawberries, blueberries and mango and I’ve stirred it into my oatmeal and eaten it on ice cream.  If I have more time and I’m feeling courageous, I like to bake it into all kinds of things -quick breads, muffins, breakfast bars – not just strawberry rhubarb pies.

If you’re like me and are a little wary of the unknown, I encourage you to give rhubarb a chance.  You might surprise yourself and like it more than you ever thought possible.   Here’s the recipe that started me down the road of rhubarb love:

Stewed Rhubarb

adapted from Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone stewedrhubarb

3/4# rhubarb

1/4 cup sugar or honey to taste

1 clove (optional)

Grated zest and juice of 1/2 orange or lemon (optional)

Chop the rhubarb into short pieces and put in a heavy pan with the sugar, cloves, zest and juice.  Cook over medium low heat until the rhubarb has broken down, about 10 – 15 minutes.  Taste and sweeten if needed.



Dried beans are one of the most nutrient dense foods available.  They’re packed with protein, fiber and antioxidants.  They do take a little time to prepare, but are totally worth the effort because they can be eaten in so  many delicious ways.

If you’ve never cooked dried beans or feel a bit intimidated by the process, check out the following blog post, “How to Cook Beans on the Stove.  Cooking lessons from the Kitchn“.  It breaks down the process into a few simple, manageable steps.

Once you’ve cooked your beans, you can use them in the following recipes.  If you have a favorite way you like to eat black beans, please let us know.  We’d love to hear from you!

Crisp Black Bean Tacos with Feta and Slaw from Smitten Kitchen

Black Bean Hummus from Melissa d’Arabian of the Food Network

Black Bean Turkey Chili from Simply Recipes






Not sure if you’ve paid your CSA balance?  Use THIS LINK to check your status and make a payment if necessary.  If you have any questions, please email us at csa@pennscorner.com.


A Route Pick Up Locations

Penn’s Corner Hamilton Ave Warehouse, Monroeville, Churchill, Green Tree, Dormont,  Whitehall, Mt. Lebanon- Woodhaven, Mt. Lebanon- Eden’s Market, Bridgeville, Greenfield, Sq Hill- Eldridge, Sq Hill- Bartlett, Sq Hill- Dalzell, Point Breeze, Chatham University, Shadyside, Friendship

Z Route Pick Up Locations

Highland Park- Jackson, Highland Park- Union Project, Fox Chapel, North Side- Children’s Museum, North Side, B Gourmet, Ross Township, Franklin Park, Bradford Woods, Restaurant ECHO, Westinghouse- Cranberry, Google, East End Brewing, Lawrenceville- Butcher on Butler, Lawrenceville- 39th St, 4 moms, Strip District- Marty’s Market, Direct Energy, Downtown- Gulf Tower,  PNC One, Highmark,  South Side, Branding Brand, Eat ‘n Park Hospitality, Edgewood Train Station, Regent Square- East End Ave, Oakland- Apple, Schenley Farms, Oakdale, Indiana


***Please remember to return last week’s empty CSA boxes to your pickup location***


A Share

 ~ 3/4# rhubarb, Nu Way Farm

 ~ 1/3# ramps, Nu Way Farm

 ~ 1# black beans, Weatherbury Farm, OG

 ~ 6 oz. green kale, Clarion River Organics, OG

 ~ cherry belle radishes, Beccari’s Farm

 ~ 2# russet potatoes, Clarion River Organics

 ~ applesauce, Penn’s Corner Farm Alliance

Z Share

 ~ 3/4# rhubarb, Nu Way Farm

 ~ 1/3# ramps, Nu Way Farm

~ 1# black beans, Weatherbury Farm, OG

~ 6 oz. green kale, Clarion River Organics, OG

 ~ 1/4# salanova lettuce OR tomatillo salsa, Crighton’s Farm

 ~ canned tomatoes, Penn’s Corner Farm Alliance

 ~ applesauce, Penn’s Corner Farm Alliance

** There are no vegan or gluten free substitutions this week.  All members will receive a brown box.**

OG- certified organic          CNG- certified naturally grown



The kale you’ll find in this week’s share is “young kale” which can be eaten raw or lightly sauteed.  Try this recipe for a simple and delicious kale salad.

Kale Salad with Pecorino and Lemon  kalesalad

adapted slightly from the Kitchn

Serves 4

1 bunch kale, washed and trimmed of stems
2 ounces Pecorino Romano, grated
1 lemon, juiced
1/4 cup olive oil
Kosher salt and fresh black pepper, to taste

Roll several kale leaves lengthwise and using the point of a chef’s knife, cut away the thick center stem. Discard. Roll the remaining stack of de-veined leaves into a tight cigar shape and slice into thin ribbons.

Toss the shaved kale with the cheese. Whisk the lemon juice and olive oil and pour over the salad. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Let the salad sit at room temperature for an hour before serving.


radishcrostiniSpring Radish Crostini with Creamy Herb Butter

from FOOD52

The crunchy baguette slathered with the garlicky-herb butter and topped with crisp radishes and delicate pea sprouts was a perfect appetizer for my
seasonal dinner party.
Serves 4

  • 5 Radishes, sliced thin
  • 1 bunch Pea Sprouts
  • 1 piece Garlic Herb Butter
  • 1 Baguette, sliced
  1. Rinse the radishes and slice very thin into rounds using a sharp knife or mandoline.
  2. Set aside and now slice your baguette into 1 inch thick slices.
  3. Slather each piece of bread with about 1/2 a tablespoon of the garlic-herb butter (I used Kerrygold) and top with 3-4 radish slices. Break the stem off the pea sprout so that it fits the length of the bread and place the leafy end layered over the radishes.
  4. Enjoy!



Cinnamon Rhubarb Muffins

from Fine Cooking

Yield: 12 muffins

For the muffins:
9 oz. (2 cups) all-purpose flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2-1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1 cup sour cream
4 oz. (8 Tbs.) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
2 large eggs
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1-1/2 cups 1/4-inch-diced rhubarb (7-1/4 oz.)
For the topping:
3 Tbs. granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 400°F. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with paper or foil baking cups.

Make the muffin batter: In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, and salt and whisk to blend.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the sour cream, melted butter, eggs, and vanilla until smooth. Lightly stir the sour cream mixture into the dry ingredients with a spatula until the batter just comes together; do not overmix. Gently stir in the diced rhubarb. The batter will be thick.

Divide the batter among the muffin cups, using the back of a spoon or a small spatula to settle the batter into the cups. The batter should mound a bit higher than the tops of the cups.

Make the topping: In a small bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon and mix well. Sprinkle a generous 1/2 tsp. of the cinnamon-sugar mixture over each muffin.

Bake the muffins until they’re golden brown, spring back most of the way when gently pressed, and a pick inserted in the center comes out clean, 18 to 22 minutes. Transfer to a rack and let the muffins cool in the pan for 5 to 10 minutes. Carefully lift the muffins out of the pan—if necessary, loosen them with the tip of a paring knife—and let them cool somewhat. Serve warm.


Ramp and Sausage Risottoramp-sausage-risotto

from Bon Apetit

yield:Makes 4 servings


  • 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
  • 1/2 pound hot Italian sausages, casings removed
  • 12 ramps, trimmed; bulbs and slender stems sliced, green tops thinly sliced
  • 1 cup arborio rice
  • 1/2 cup dry vermouth
  • 3 cups (or more) low-salt chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese plus additional for passing


Melt butter in heavy large saucepan over medium heat. Add sausage. Cook until no longer pink, breaking up with spoon, about 5 minutes. Add sliced ramp bulbs and stems. Saut´ until almost tender, about 2 minutes. Add rice and stir 1 minute. Add vermouth. Simmer until liquid is absorbed, about 1 minute. Add 3 cups chicken broth, 1 cup at a time, simmering until almost absorbed before next addition and stirring often. Continue cooking until rice is just tender and risotto is creamy, adding more broth if dry and stirring often, about 18 minutes. Mix in green tops and 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese. Season risotto to taste with salt and pepper. Serve, passing additional grated cheese separately.


Check out the Penn’s Corner  page for great recipe ideas!

Click here for some more radish recipe ideas from our radish pinterest page!  If you have favorite recipes online, please let us know so we can add them to our Pinterest page.   Contact csa@pennscorner.com with the links!


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