Recipe Ideas: Swiss Chard and Zucchini

F&wdishIn advance of today's share, I wanted to post a few recipe ideas that will use ingredients you'll receive later today (at least I think you will as of this a.m.). These were all submitted by fellow CSA members -- if you have other recipe recommendations, email them to me or post them here on the blog, and I'll include them in a future recipe round-up!

And don't forget that our blog has a great archive of recipes recommended from previous years. Check out the categories on the left-hand side of the page to see the recipes broken down by vegetables. 

-- Clay 





9 Healthy Recipe Ideas for Zucchini (including vegan ideas)

Over on our Facebook page, CSA member Fred shared this great link for Healthy Zucchini Recipes That Taste Like Guilty Pleasures. There are 9 great ideas there -- check them out! 


Tomato Chard and Gruyere Casserole 

Also on Facebook, Amanda shared this recipe for Tomato, Chard and Gruyere Casserole, from Food & Wine magazine (pictured above, courtesy of Food & Wine). 


A Dish That Uses Chard and Potatoes

And Lea submitted this recipe for Blitva, a dish found all over former Yugoslavia. She says it's the most likely side dish you'll see in Bosnia or Croatia and is equally delicious next to fish, meat or on it's own. It happens to use Chard and Potatoes, both in this week's CSA. Here's the recipe!



  • Swiss Chard (or any other green leafy vegetable - I used the full amount from last week's share)
  • Potatoes (I used 4-5 from the CSA share last week)
  • Garlic 1-3 cloves but to taste
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 small white onion
  • parsley

1. Begin by preparing the chard by removing the stalks, and any leaves that are damaged. Rinse well. Separate the stalks and chop into 1-2 inch pieces, keep in a different bowl.  Slice the leaves thinly.

2. Often you peel the potatoes, but I love the skins so I just cut them into pieces. Put the potatoes into water with about 1 Tablespoon of kosher salt - this is important, and boil/simmer for about 15 mins until the taters are soft but not falling apart.

3. When the potatoes are starting to become soft, add the chard stems for about 3 mins, then throw in the chard leaves and cook until both the potatoes and the chard are soft.

4. Meanwhile, mince the garlic, parsley and thinly sliced onion (this is optional - I used one of the small white onions from the CSA because it looked too yummy to not be thrown in - it's not usually found in this dish however.

5. When the chard is done, strain the water.

6. Heat some olive oil in a pan and add garlic to it. I find that garlic can brown very easily so I usually add the oil and garlic at the same time to a cold pan, then let them heat up together - sacrilegious but I never burn garlic now.  Fry for a minute or two, add half the parsley, then add the chard and the potatoes.

7. Continue frying the vegetables until the water has evaporated and the flavour of garlic and olive oil has permeated the chard and potatoes. Some of the taters will break apart and give the dish a creamy texture - this is fine - it's served both ways in Bosnia/Dalmatian Coast - as a distinct two vegetable dish or as a creamy mixture much like Colcannon.  

It's hard to mess this one up  - it actually tastes a bit better if the potatoes and chard are left in the simmering water a bit too long.  I keep the water from the boil pot and use it in soups to save all the nutrients.  




Wildlife Sightings + Recipes for This Week: More Zucchini and Greens Ideas

(Photo from CSA Member Deborah Starobin Armstrong)

Here are some new ideas for how to use the vegetables in this week's share. Plus, a great photo and story below from a CSA Member who had a wildlife encounter while at the farm.  

Have an idea to share? A recipe for a certain vegetable you're wanting? Leave it here in the comments or shoot me an email


Swiss Chard and Collard Greens

CSA member Bonnie suggests this Creamy Swiss Chard Pasta that she made and enjoyed. 

Fred made this Baked Cheese Polenta with Swiss Chard, which he says he really liked. (Chard is on u-pick this week.) 

If you still have collards, Bonnie also recommends this recipe for Kickin' Collard Greens. I'm planning to try this one myself tonight, as we have a big bag of them that need to be used up. 


Squash and Zucchini

Nichole shared this link from Saveur magazine, which has compiled a bunch of ideas for zucchini

I've personally been eyeing this Shaved Summer Squash Salad from Bon Appetit, which looks light and fresh. 

And of course there are more ideas in our archives for zucchini, squash, chard and greens

Continue reading "Wildlife Sightings + Recipes for This Week: More Zucchini and Greens Ideas" »

Recipes for This Week: Cabbage, Greens and Swiss Chard


Here are a few recommended recipes from CSA members that I received over the last week. If you have a recipe to recommend, or want to submit a photo, email me anytime. (As an aside, photos don't have to be professional. The one above is one that I snapped on my phone and then doctored with an app called Instagram).  

And now, here are some ideas for Cabbage, Greens and Chard.  

Cabbage Ideas...

Angela made and loved this recipe for Sweet and Spicy Pork and Napa Cabbage Stir Fry with Spicy Noodles that she found at She substituted fish for the pork, but also believes that it would be a great vegetarian dish, too. 

Laura recommends two Cabbage recipes: Stuffed Cabbage from Smitten Kitchen and a Chinese Cabbage Salad that she says is great. 

Ideas for Greens...

Deborah, on our Facebook page, recommends this recipe for Southern-Style Crock Pot Greens. It can use collard or turnip greens (or both).  

Remember, that the greens on our turnips are edible, as are the greens on your radishes

Ideas for Swiss Chard...

Angela writes both a recipe and a book recommendation. I read the book, too, and absolutely loved it:

"This is a recipe from the book Animal Vegetable Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver.  Her family ate a whole year using essentially only products from their farm or produced locally.  They provided recipes for seasonal vegetables throughout the year in the book and provide them on their website.  This one [for Swiss Chard] is called Eggs in a Nest and is a tasty way to use Swiss chard, though I use sun-dried tomatoes in oil instead of dried ones."


Happy cooking!

-- Clay

Bone Dry Down on the Farm – Just ask the dogs

Clagett Farm Recipes
Photos and Recipes~Rita Calvert 2007

Farm Talk from Michael Heller

Bone Dry Down on the Farm – Just ask the dogs
Old Mr. Devaughn dropped by the farm the other day.  He’s 86, but hard work and tobacco have conspired to make him look older.  He brought with him two 5 gallon buckets of unshelled limas.  He’d picked them that morning starting at 7 “before it got so goshed darn hot”. Just being neighborly, and also one of his many thank yous for us letting him walk the farm with his young rabbit dogs from time to time. He grew up on the farm next door with his tenant-farming family.  But he doesn’t live there any more.  Coming here nurtures early memories, which he often shares with us.  This morning he talks about the drought.
        “I ain’t never seen it so dry – not even in the 30’s and them days was dry!   Snooky Catner over on Osborne is feedin’ hay to his cows like its winter.  Lots of others is doin’ the same. “Why heck there’s lots of years we had the fire department to bring us water, ‘cuz the well wazn’t but 35’ deep.  But this year! – why them dogs can’t even hunt.  I put ‘em out with a rabbit not 10 yards away, and they couldn’t pick up a scent it was that dry. I’ve gived up even runnin’ the dogs.” 


Concia Zucchini with Mint and Vinegar from Cucina Ebraica by Joyce Goldstein

4 to 6 small zucchini, (about 1 1/2 pounds)
3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint or basil 
2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley 
2 large cloves garlic, minced 
6 tablespoons olive oil 
4 tablespoons red or white wine vinegar

Cut the zucchini into 1/4 inch thick slices, or to prepare it Veneto fashion, cut the zucchini lengthwise into 1/4 inch thick slices. Sprinkle with salt and let stand in a colander for 30 minutes to drain off any bitter juices. Rinse and pat dry. In a small bowl, combine the mint or basil, parsley, and garlic. Warm the olive oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. In batches, add the zucchini and cook, turning as needed, until golden on both sides, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a shallow serving dish and sprinkle with some of the mint mixture and some of the vinegar. Repeat with the rest of the zucchini, mint mixture, and vinegar. Leave at room temperature for 1 to 2 hours, basting occasionally with vinegar in the dish, before serving.

Food of the Week . . . Swiss Chard
Did you know that Swiss chard promotes healthy bones and vision? It is a very good non-dairy source of calcium and an excellent source of vitamin K, which plays an important role in maintaining bone health since it activates osteocalcin, the major non-collagen protein in bone. Swiss chard's rich supply of magnesium is also necessary for healthy bones. About two-thirds of the magnesium in the human body is found in our bones. Some helps give bones their physical structure, while the rest is found on the surface of the bone where it is stored for the body to draw upon as needed. Swiss chard is also an excellent source of vitamin A and is rich in beta-carotene, two important nutrients for healthy vision. In a study of over 50,000 women, those who consumed the highest dietary amount of vitamin A had a 39% reduced risk of developing cataracts. Chard is also a concentrated source of the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin, two powerful antioxidants that concentrate in the lens and retina to protect them from oxidative damage.Carotenoids have been found to reduce risk of developing cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.

Mediterranean Swiss Chard
Serves 2

Swiss chard is one of the super foods rich in many nutrients, including anti-oxidants. We have created this recipe so you can eat it often with many meals. The simple dressing complements it very well. When the chard is fresh it needs nothing else to be delicious and satisfying. Don’t overlook the stems as they add extra fiber with close to the same nutrients s the leaves--just chop them into smaller pieces.
2 large bunches chopped Swiss chard
1 medium clove garlic, pressed
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar or fresh lemon juice
extra virgin olive oil to taste
salt and black pepper to taste

Bring lightly salted water to a rapid boil in a large pot. Cut off tough bottom part of stems.
Add the chopped stems and leaves to the boiling water and simmer for only 3-5 minutes, until tender.

Drain in a colander and press out excess water. Toss with rest of ingredients. Make sure you don't toss
chard with dressing until you are ready to serve. Otherwise the flavor will become diluted.

Okra with Coriander and Tomatoes

1 pound chopped tomatoes
1 pound fresh okra
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 onions thinly sliced
 2 teaspoons coriander seeds, crushed
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 teaspoon sugar
finely grated rind and juice of 1 lemon
salt and ground black pepper
Trim off any stalks from okra and leave whole. Heat oil in a saute pan and fry the onions
and coriander for 3-4 minutes until beginning to color.
Add okra and garlic and fry for 1 minute. Gently stir in the tomatoes and sugar and simmer
for about 15 minutes, until okra is tender, stirring onceor twice. Stir in lemon rind and
juice and add salt and pepper to taste, adding a little more sugar if necessary. Serve warm or cold.

Okra - Japanese style
This is a very general ethnic recipe where a pinch of this or a dad of that is up to you.

1. Boil okra - don't overboil too much because it gets stickier.
2. Wash it in cold water (to keep the color green).
3. Cut (bite size) in pieces.
4. Put them in a bowl.
5. If you can find Japanese dried bonito frakes (called katsuobushi, which is sold in any oriental store), put them on the okra.
6. Pour a couple of drops of soy sauce (don't over do it!) and a drop of mirin (which you can find in any oriental store)
7. Mix them lightly, and done!

Baked Summer Squash with Pesto Crumbs
This can be served as a whole meal, over wild rice and garnished with toasted pecans.

3 pounds mixed summer squash
3 tablespoons. butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/4 cup half-and-half
3/4 teaspoon. salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon mace
1 teaspoon sugar
2 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
2 shallots, minced
4 scallions, finely chopped
½ cup Pesto Bread Crumbs Recipe (see below)

Preheat oven to 400F. Grease a 2 ½ to 3 quart casserole dish with cover. Trim squash and cut into large chunks (about 1 ½ inches). Arrange squash pieces in casserole and set aside. Melt butter and olive oil together in a small saucepan. Remove from heat and add remaining ingredients, blending thoroughly. Pour sauce mixture over squash, tossing until squash is coated. Cover casserole and bake 40 minutes. Toss squash gently and spoon juices and seasonings from the bottom of dish over squash. Sprinkle with bread crumbs and bake uncovered for 10 minutes longer, until squashes are tender when pierced with a knife.
Adapted from More Recipes from a Kitchen Garden by Renee Shepherd.

Pesto Bread Crumbs
Makes 2 cups
1 cup dry bread crumbs
2 large cloves garlic, chopped
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan or Asiago cheese
3 tablespoons roasted pine nuts
1 ½ cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
Combine all ingredients in a food processor until thoroughly blended. After using, refrigerate any leftovers.


Squash Pancakes

2 eggs
1/2 cup milk
4 medium summer squashes, grated
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1/2 cup grated cheese
1/3 cup each chopped fresh parsley, basil and cilantro
2 tablespoons minced shallot or green onion
4 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup flour
Mix together eggs and milk. Add squash, herbs and shallots. Then mix in the cheese. Add slowly the bread crumbs and flour and mix well. In a large, heavy, non-stick skillet, melt 1T butter until it starts to brown. Spoon about 1/4C of mixture into the pan and flatten a bit with the spoon. You might be able to fit 2 pancakes into the same pan at once. When the edges show a little browning turn with a spatula. Cook the other side until it is also golden brown. Keep pancakes warm in the oven until they are all cooked.

Cream of Zucchini and Pernod Soup(CREME DE COURGETTES A L'ANIS )
Serves 6

This hot or cold soup with our most abundant zucchini is dressed up beautifully with the earthy flavor of anise from the fennel seed and the French liqueur, Pernod.

2 tablespoons olive oil
6 cups chopped zucchini (from about 6 medium zucchini) 
1 large onion, chopped 
2 cups water 
4 garlic cloves, chopped 
1 1/2 tablespoons fennel seeds 
1 fresh thyme sprig 
2 tablespoons crème fraîche or whipping cream 
2 tablespoons Pernod or other anise_flavored liqueur 
Additional olive oil
fresh basil buds

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add chopped zucchini and chopped onion and sauté until onion is translucent, about 15 minutes. Add 2 cups water, chopped garlic, 1 1/2 tablespoons fennel seeds and thyme sprig. Stir in 2 tablespoons crème fraîche and 2 tablespoons Pernod. Simmer soup uncovered 20 minutes. Remove thyme sprig from soup. Working in batches, purée soup in processor until smooth. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate.) Return to saucepan and rewarm over medium heat. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Ladle soup into bowls. Drizzle with olive oil and serve. Garnish with basil.

Summer Squash with Toasted Garlic and Lime
Serves 4

1 pound zucchini or yellow squash, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 scant tsp salt, plus more to season finished dish
2 tablespoons vegetable broth for sauteing
5 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lime juice (can sub fresh lemon juice)
freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 teaspoons freshly chopped oregano
2 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley

In a large skillet, saute the garlic in the vegetable broth until soft, about 3 minutes. Remove garlic and set aside. Raise heat to
medium-high. Add squash to pan and saute for 8-10 minutes, until tender but a little crunchy.

Stir in lime juice, oregano, parsley, pepper, roasted garlic, and salt to taste. Mix well.


Paul's Zuke Soup
Serves 6-8

This yummy soup makes use of much of the Clagett bounty.

1 onion, sliced 
2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped 
3 pounds zucchini (8 or so medium ones), chopped 
2 cups chicken or vegetable stock 
2 cups water 
1/2 cup parsley leaves 
3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil 
4 strips bacon, fried, drained and crumbled 
salt and pepper 
freshly grated Parmesan cheese 
homemade croutons 
Additional chopped basil for garnish

Place onion, garlic, zucchini, stock, water, parsley, basil, bacon and dashes of salt and pepper in a large stockpot. Simmer until zucchini is very tender. Process in a blender until very smooth. Adjust seasoning. Serve hot, sprinkled with freshly grated Parmesan cheese, croutons and additional chopped basil.

Vegetable Kebabs with Mustard Sauce
Serves 4

Add shrimp if you like since they cook as quickly as the vegetables.

16 baby carrots (about 8 ounces), peeled
16 baby yellow scallop squash* (about 8 ounces) or 3/4 pound yellow squash
16 baby zucchini (about 6 ounces) or 3/4 pound zucchini
16 red or white pearl onions (about 6 ounces)
1 1/2 tablespoons white-wine vinegar
1 1/2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 large red bell peppers (about 9 ounces), cut into sixteen pieces
2-by-3/4-inch pieces
eight 12-inch bamboo skewers, soaked in water to cover 1 hour

In a large saucepan of boiling salted water cook carrots 1 minute. Add yellow squash and zucchini and cook vegetables 5 minutes. Transfer vegetables with a slotted spoon to a large bowl of ice and cold water to stop cooking and drain well in a colander. Transfer vegetables to a bowl. (If using larger yellow squash and zucchini cut them into a total of thirty-two 3/4-inch pieces.) In boiling water remaining in pan cook onions 4 minutes and transfer with slotted spoon to bowl of ice and cold water. Drain onions well in colander and peel, leaving root ends intact.
Vegetables may be boiled 1 day ahead and chilled in sealable plastic bags.

In a small bowl whisk together vinegar, mustard, oil, and salt and pepper to taste. Basting sauce can be made 1 day ahead.

Prepare grill.

Thread vegetables, alternating them, onto skewers. Brush one side of kebabs with about half of sauce and grill,coated side down, on an oiled rack set 5 to 6 inches over glowing coals 5 minutes. Brush kebabs with remaining sauce and turn. Grill kebabs 5 minutes more, or until squash is tender.

Little Green Lessons

It comes the time of year when the verdant veggies are most abundant and we quickly pass from gratitude for the fresh leafy greens to a feeling of: Ho-hum what to do next with those endless bags of antioxidants?

So the following are some creative ways to use them and add a decidedly creative pinch of flavor.

Lavender Mint Green Jasmine Ice Tea

Makes 1 gallon

Design0001A food professional will often use 8 tea bags to make 1 gallon of ice tea. Keep that as your general rule and then add herbs as desired. If you want a bit of intrigue to your iced tea, you can add 2 cups of fresh pureed watermelon juice or even 2 cups of apricot, cranberry or other berry juice.

8 slices fresh ginger root pounded in a mortar and pestle to release juices
8 jasmine green tea bags
6 sprigs fresh lavender
3 sprigs fresh mint (spearmint or peppermint)
8 cups water
honey to taste

In a medium saucepan bring the ginger and water to a boil. Turn off heat, add tea bags and herbs, and cover and let steep for 1 hour. Add honey to taste.

Ice can now be added to equal 1 gallon if using immediately. Or refrigerate and add cold water when serving.

Free Form Swiss Chard Tart
Serves 6
This layered combination of vegetables and ricotta is blanketed with a pie crust dough in a quick wrap to enclose the scrumptious filling. Rustically elegant, it says fresh and homemade without being fussy. As a brunch entree it’s outstanding. For dinner it complements grilled beef, pork or lamb nicely.

1 10-inch pastry dough round
1 1/2 cups cooked sweet potatoes diced and tossed with olive oil
1 sautéed sweet onion
1 cup ricotta cheese mixed with garlic chives, garlic scapes or 1 clove minced garlic
1 cup coarsely chopped olives
2 cups thinly sliced Swiss chard or Pac Choi tossed with olive oil
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Bake 375 about 30 minutes or until the dough is golden.

Gorgonzola and Dried Cherry Summer Salad with Edible Flowers
Serves 6

"The mixture of ingredients is a taste explosion." This simple combination of leafy green lettuce, sweet red onion, sliced apple, roasted pecans and dried cherries tossed in a raspberry vinaigrette can serve as a main lunch entrée or on the side in a more extravagant meal. Add the flowers as the “Knock Their Socks Off” garnish!

To talk a bit about Arugula flowers, you actually have to taste them. They impart a delicate version of the arugula leaf which can often be very spicy. (Of course the very spicy is extremely nutritious).

6 cups baby greens and spicy greens
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled and thinly sliced
1/2 cup roasted pecans
1/4 cup dried cherries
raspberry vinaigrette*
1/2 cup crumbled gorgonzola cheese
Arugula flowers and nasturtium flowers

Toss the lettuce, onion, apple, pecans and cherries in a large salad bowl. Pour on enough dressing to coat and toss the salad. Garnish with gorgonzola cheese before serving. Add the flowers as the “Knock Their Socks Off” garnish!

*You may use a bottled all natural raspberry vinaigrette or make a quick and easy homemade version by whisking together:

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 to 3 tablespoons raspberry vinegar
1 clove minced garlic
sea salt, to taste
ground pepper, to taste

Recipes from “Cook For Life Balance” by Rita Calvert