Buying local produce is an important way of living sustainably, and one of the easiest ways is by supporting a local farm that runs a Community-Supported Agriculture program (CSA). Essentially, early in the season, members of the community pay for a share of the produce the farm will create during the upcoming season. And, once the season start, you collect a basket of the seasonal CSA vegetables.
At certain point in the season when the crop is abundant, we collect many vegetables and it can be challenging to know what to do with them. So, inspired by other recipes I found online, this recipe is sure to help you use up many of your CSA veggies including those you might not know what to do with them.
The recipe below should be viewed as a foundational recipes, not to be followed exactly as is, but to inspire you with a good base to use up your veggies. And the best part, you can definitely focus on your plant points on this one. Remember the biggest predictor of a healthy gut is based on the diversity of plants that you eat. If you end up trying it, please let me know what you think!
Community Supported Agriculture Vegetable Soup
- 1 cup onions any kind or any other vegetable from the allium family like leeks, shallots
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1/4 tsp sea salt or to taste (you don't need to measure it) (optional)
- 6 to 8 cup vegetables use any kind of vegetables celery, carrots, parsnip, turnips, rutabaga, radishes, potatoes, cabbage, kohlrabi and simply dice them. Varying the size can add interesting texture.
- 28 ounces diced organic tomatoes from a can or from the basket, if you are serving to kids, you may want to put them through a food processor for texture
- 4 cups vegetable broth homemade or store-bought
- 2 to 4 cups water essentially to cover the vegetables
- 2 teaspoon dried rosemary
- 2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried tarragon (optional)
- 1/4 cup alphabet pasta (optional, but recommended if serving to little ones)
- 2 cups white cooked cannellini beans the white kidney beans, or use navy beans if you prefer the smaller size.
- 3 cups green leafy vegetables finely chopped, such as kale, swiss chard, spinach
Garnishes (optional but added nutritional value)
- 2/3 cup broccoli sprouts
- 1/3 cup fresh parsley
- Heat a large dutch-oven or stock pot on medium low heat. Add about 1/4 cup of water and then the onion. Slowly cook the onion until they are soft and golden. Add more water if it evaporated too quickly. (Read note about this oil-free technique)
- Add the garlic to the pot and cook for 30 seconds. Add the salt and mix well (optional).
- Add your chopped veggies (excluding the tomatoes and greens). Cook the vegetables until their colour becomes brighter, and their water starts to release. They will continue cooking once you add the broth.
- Add the chopped tomatoes, broth and enough water to cover the vegetables. Add the spices. Raise the temperature to medium or medium high and cook for about 20 minutes until the harder vegetables are starting to soften.
- (Optional, but recommended to make this fun for kids) When you think that the veggies need about 10 minutes to cook, add the alphabet pasta. You may need to add more water.
- Add the cannellini beans and mix. Then add the green vegetables and mix. Continue heating the soup until the greens are wilted and the other vegetables are cooked to you desired level. Some like they vegetables softer, while others like them with a bit more bite.
- Serve a large soup bowl, and garnish with broccoli sprouts, or fresh herbs like parsley. Eat with a nice slice of toasted whole grain sourdough bread!