Well Dined


CSA Week 6

You may be wondering what happened to week 5 - unfortunately I was unable to pick up my share that weekend. Not to worry - when this happens the food is donated, not thrown out.

In the crate:
2 bunches of beets, one large, one small
spring onions
large onions
yellow zucchini
globe zucchini
yellow squash


Sour Cherry Crumb Cake

As soon as I saw the sour cherries, I knew that I wanted to make a crumb cake recipe that I had been looking at for awhile. I needed more than the pint provided, but luckily I still had some frozen from the berry picking adventure.

First, gather the ingredients for the crumb topping: flour, sugar, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon, melted butter.

Mix the ingredients together to form a sweet and buttery topping.

Cream butter and sugar together.

Beat in eggs and vanilla, then a flour mixture and buttermilk.

Spread the batter into a pan and smooth the top.

Place the cherries in an even layer on top of the batter.

Sprinkle the crumb topping over the cherries.

Bake until golden brown and cool before cutting.


So many beets!
I made a lot of beet dishes this week.

The first was a mixed chip platter with kale chips, beet green chips (made the same way as the kale chips), and beet chips.

I used one large beet, peeled and sliced into very thin slices (using the slicing blade on my food processor)

Then I laid the slices out on a pan, brushed them with oil and baked them until crisp.


Next I made Beet, Cheddar, and Apple Tarts, served with a shaved asparagus salad. The tarts are buttery and rich, with sweetness from the apple and beets, and tangy sharpness from the cheese.

Start by cutting thawed puff pastry into 4 inch rounds.

Alternate layers of thinly sliced beet and apple, and top with white cheddar.

Bake until pastry is golden brown and lightly puffed.


Lastly, I made a chilled summer borscht with beets, cucumber, and lots of dill; and topped with tzatziki - a Greek cucumber and yogurt dip. It is cool and refreshing, and the bright purple color is fun.

Start by boiling the beets, then allowing them to cool, reserving the cooking liquid.

Finely dice the beets and a cucumber and chill in the refrigerator with some of the cooking liquid from the beets. Whisk together chicken stock, sour cream, yogurt, and lemon juice.

Combine the mixtures, add the dill, and refrigerate. Serve with a dollop of tzatziki on top.


I decided to make another chilled soup using one of the cucumbers. It is light and refreshing and herbaceous.

Start by peeling, coring, and chopping a cucumber.

Puree sour cream, basil, mint, a scallion, and some water in a blender. Add the cucumber and pulse until mostly combined, but with a few chunky bits.

Add lemon juice and salt and allow to chill for several hours. It will be frothy and creamy and oh-so-good.


I really enjoyed making the squash galette in week 4, so I came up with a new version of it - Ratatouille Galette - using tomato, eggplant, zucchini, and squash.

Start by thinly slicing an eggplant, squash, and zucchini (that is actually a yellow zucchini - a green one would provide more visual interest). I used the thinnest setting on my food processor, next time I will probably go one up from that.

Lay everything out on paper towels, sprinkle with salt, and allow to drain for 20 minutes.

Roll out pastry dough - I used double the original recipe to make 4 individual size galettes. Top with a mixture of ricotta, goat, and Parmesan cheeses mixed with lemon juice and minced garlic. I had originally intended to shingle tomato slices in with the other vegetables to provide pretty color variation, but with the slicer set so thin they ended up shredded. Instead, I used them in a single layer on top of the cheese.

Shingle the sliced vegetables around in pretty concentric circles, drizzle with olive oil, then fold the edges of the pastry up, and brush with an egg wash.

When it bakes, the crust becomes flaky like a croissant. Here you can see all the layers - creamy cheese, tangy tomatoes, fresh vegetables, yum!

Half a mini galette is enough for one person when paired with a salad. You can freeze the galettes before you bake them by wrapping them tightly in plastic wrap. Bake them from frozen, adding 20-30 minutes to the cooking time.


Sour Cherry Crumb Cakes
adapted from Martha Stewart
makes 16 squares

2 oz (4 tbsp) unsalted butter, melted, plus more for dish
3/4 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for dish
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
4 oz (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup buttermilk
2 1/2 cups (1 pound) fresh sour cherries, pitted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour a 9-inch square baking dish or cake pan, tapping out excess.

Make the topping: Mix together all ingredients, set aside.

Make the cakes: Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl, set aside. With a mixer, cream the butter and granulated sugar until pale and fluffy. Beat eggs and vanilla into butter mixture. Working in alternating batches, add flour mixture and buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat until just combined. Pour into prepared dish, and smooth with an offset spatula. Dot top with cherries, and sprinkle with crumb topping.

Bake until golden and a tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 1 hour. Let cool before cutting.

Beet Chips
adapted from Martha Stewart

2 medium beets
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F, with racks in upper and lower thirds. Peel beets and slice 1/16 inch thick with a mandoline or food processor. In a large bowl, toss beets with extra-virgin olive oil.

On two rimmed baking sheets, arrange beets in a single layer. Stack another rimmed baking sheet on top of each. Bake until edges of beets begin to dry out, about 20 minutes. Uncover and rotate sheets. Bake 10 to 20 minutes, removing chips as they become lighter in color. Watch them very carefully as they will go from crisp to burnt very quickly. Transfer to a wire rack - chips will crisp up as they cool.

Beet, Cheddar, and Apple Tarts
adapted from Martha Stewart
makes 6-8 tarts

1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed and cut into 4-inch rounds
3/4 cup shredded white cheddar (3 oz)
1 small apple, cored and very thinly sliced
1 small beet, scrubbed, peeled, and very thinly sliced
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Place pastry rounds on a parchment-lined baking sheet and prick all over with a fork. Divide half the cheese among pastry rounds. Top each with 2 to 3 apple slices. Tuck 2 to 3 beet slices among apple slices and top with remaining cheese. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with thyme. Bake until pastry is golden brown and slightly puffed, 13 to 15 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Chilled Summer Borscht with Tzatziki
adapted from Martha Stewart
serves 8

2 lbs medium beets (about 5) without tops, scrubbed
2 cups low-sodium chicken stock
1 cup sour cream
1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp coarse salt
1 English cucumber, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch dice
2 tbsp finely chopped fresh dill
Freshly ground pepper
Tzatziki - recipe follows

Place beets in a medium saucepan, and cover with water by 2 inches. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until tender, 30 to 35 minutes.

Remove beets with a slotted spoon, reserving cooking liquid. Let beets cool, about 20 minutes. Strain cooking liquid and refrigerate, covered, until chilled, about 2 hours. Peel beets, and cut into 1/4-inch dice.

Whisk together stock, sour cream, yogurt, lemon juice, the salt, and 1 1/2 cups cooled beet liquid in a large bowl. Stir in beets, cucumber, and dill. Season with pepper. Cover, and refrigerate for 2 hours (or up to 1 day).

Stir soup, then divide among 8 bowls. Spoon 1 tablespoon tzatziki onto each serving.


1 English cucumber, peeled and grated (3/4 cup)
1 tsp coarse salt
1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
1/2 small garlic clove, minced (1/2 teaspoon)
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
2 tbsp finely chopped fresh dill

Toss cucumber with salt in a colander, and let drain for 20 minutes. Press lightly to extract excess water, then transfer cucumber to a medium bowl. Stir in yogurt, garlic, lemon juice, and dill. Cover, and refrigerate for 1 hour (or up to 1 day).

Chilled Cucumber, Basil, and Mint Soup
adapted from Martha Stewart
serves 4

1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup fresh basil
1/2 cup fresh mint
1/4 cup sliced scallion
1 cup water
1 English cucumber, peeled, seeds removed, and choppedhttp://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gif
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Puree sour cream, basil, mint, scallion, and water in a blender. Add cucumber, pulse until just combined but still slightly chunky. Stir in lemon juice and season with salt. Chill soup at least 3 hours (soup is best served the same day).

Summer Squash and Ricotta Galette
this one is all me! (crust from Smitten Kitchen)
Makes 4 mini galettes, enough for 4-8 people

For the pastry:
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, chilled in the freezer for 30 minutes
1/2 tsp salt
2 sticks cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1/2 cup sour cream
4 tsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup ice water

1 small zucchinis, sliced into 1/4 inch thick rounds
1 small yellow squash, sliced into 1/4 inch thick rounds
1 small eggplant, sliced into 1/4 inch thick rounds
2 small tomatoes, sliced into 1/4 inch thick rounds
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 large log of goat cheese (8 oz, usually)
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 tsp minced garlic
Juice from 1 lemon
1 tbsp slivered basil leaves

1 egg yolk beaten with 1 tsp water

Whisk together the flour and salt in a large bowl. Sprinkle bits of butter over dough and cut it in using a pastry blender until the mixture resembles coarse meal. In a small bowl, whisk together the sour cream, lemon juice, and water and add this to the butter-flour mixture. Mix with your fingertips until large lumps form. Pat the lumps into a ball - do not overwork the dough. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 min.

Meanwhile, spread the zucchini, squash, and eggplant out over several layers of paper towels. Sprinkle with 1/2 tsp salt and let drain for 30 minutes - gently blot the tops of the vegetables dry with paper towels before using.

When you are ready to make the galettes, preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a bowl, mix the ricotta, Parmesan, goat cheese, garlic, and lemon juice together, and season with salt and pepper to taste.

On a floured work surface, roll the dough out into 4 6-inch rounds. Transfer to two ungreased baking sheets lined with parchment paper. Spread the cheese mixture evenly over the dough, leaving a 2-inch border. Arrange the zucchini, squash, eggplant, and tomato attractively on top of the ricotta in concentric circles, starting at the outside edge. Drizzle with olive oil. Fold the border over the filling, pleating the edge to make it fit - the centers will be open. Brush the crusts with the egg yolk glaze.

Bake the galettes until the vegetables are slightly wilted and the galette is golden brown, 30 to 40 minutes. Remove from the oven, sprinkle with basil (I like to cut it with scissors directly onto the galettes), let stand for 5 minutes, then slide the galettes onto a serving plate. Cut into wedges and serve hot, warm or at room temperature.

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  1. Beet chips! That is genius! I too am up to my ears in beets from my CSA, so I will definitely try making those.

  2. They are really good – sweet, like sweet potato chips – yum!

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