KalepastaI swore I’d never pick up a bunch of kale or chard again after my summer battle with a CSA box.  Don’t get me wrong, I loved the weekly box, but it nearly cost me my sanity.

Let me explain.  I was pregnant for the third time the summer of 2011.  Maybe I felt that between the job, two kids, and a husband who likes to leave his dirty socks and towels on the floor I needed a little more work.  So I ordered a CSA box. No clue what that is?  Click here.

“Lovely”, “Fresh veggies!”, “All summer long!”….you may think all of these things, and you would be severely misled.  The people who can handle the  onslaught of a CSA box for 22 straight weeks either have 1) an army of angry vegan men at home who demand a sustainably-grown dinner every night, 2) several hours (times ten) of free time to lovingly wash, prep, store and cook a large box of dirt-caked vegetables every week, or 3) an insane desire to make truckloads of vegetarian lasagna.

I was shoehorned into the third category, but not by choice.  It was the only meal I could make on a mass-produced scale to use up the mountain of chard and kale that landed on my doorstep every Tuesday.  It was like whack-a-mole meets Gordon Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares.

Before I start to sound ungrateful, let me concede that it was one of the more satisfying projects I’ve ever undertaken in the kitchen.  But I was totally overwhelmed.  Maybe it was that I was too accustomed to Whole Foods sanitizing my veggies with a firehose before they land on the shelves.  Or that I just had too much going on at work.  Or that I GAVE BIRTH that summer and could have used a little less time on my feet.  Like someone who pigs out on pizza and can never hear the word again, I thought my relationship with kale was forever doomed.


continue reading