Winter CSA and Tania’s Antioxidant Vegetable Soup
When my husband and I moved to Charleston I first became aware of CSAs (Community Supported Agriculture). I learned about CSA — from one of the money saving blogs I visit — as a great way to save money on produce. Most of the time this produce is organic, but check your local CSA for details on their farming methods.
If you are not familiar with this concept here are the basics. CSAs are farms that you invest in. Most allow you to choose a level of participation or Share. The schedule is divided by season: winter share, spring share, and fall share. For a certain amount per week—this varies by CSA — you get whatever is being harvested that particular week. We pay about twenty dollars for a small share and this is more than enough vegetables and fruit for two people. I went onto localharvest.org to search for a CSA near me that I could participate in. Our CSA has various delivery points. All you do is select the one most convenient for you, and that is where you go to pick up your share every week. Our pick up point is about a mile or so from our house, so it’s very convenient. Often times you can add on other things to your weekly order for an additional charge. Our CSA offers raw milk, pastured eggs, shrimp, wine, pecans, and honey to name a few.
Needless to say I am able to work in plenty of vegetables into my diet this way. Many days I eat vegetables and fruit for the majority of my meals and snacks. I came up with this soup recipe as a way to use a bunch of vegetables in one dish. For variety you can change any of the vegetables. Use what vegetables you have on hand. You could also add beans or whole grain pasta to this soup to make it heartier.
Antioxidant Vegetable Soup
- 1 small onion, sliced crosswise (opposite the rings)
- 1 small shallot, thinly sliced
- 3 stalks celery with leaves, 1/2 inch dice
- 2 large carrots, 1/2 inch dice
- 4 to 5 stalks bok choy, 1/2 inch dice
- 1/4 to 1/2 jalapeño with seeds, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup white wine
- 1 T umami paste or tomato paste
- 1 15oz can diced tomatoes
- 1 quart organic vegetable stock
- 1 teaspoon marjoram
- 1/2 teaspoon thyme
- 1 pinch crushed red pepper
- White truffle oil for drizzling (optional)
- Parmesan cheese, shaved for garnish
Sauté the onion and shallot until tender; add the celery, carrots, bok choy, and jalapeno and cook for 5 to 7 minutes until slightly tender. Deglaze the pan with the white wine. Add the umami paste or tomato paste and cook for 1 minute. Add the tomatoes, stock, and spices. Bring the mixture to a boil, then lower heat to low and cover and simmer for 25 minutes. Ladle into bowls and drizzle with the white truffle oil. Garnish with shaved or grated parmesan cheese.