In this week’s box:
2 pints blueberries
1 flat peaches
half dozen eggs
9 ambrosia cantaloupe
1 bag tomatoes
1 dozen corn
8 half-pints OPTIONAL BONUS pick-your-own raspberries, 8 a.m. until noon on Wed., Aug. 6, CSA members only
4 half-pints OPTIONAL BONUS pick-your-own raspberries, 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. on Sun., Aug. 10, CSA members only
These are all familiar summer vegetables, so here are a few ideas you may not have thought of yet:
Cantaloupe sorbet – You could mix in other fruits, as well.
Roasted cantaloupe – This sounded strange to me at first, but now I am kind of craving the idea of eating it over oatmeal.
Cantaloupe and prosciutto with balsamic vinegar and mint – This is kind of a fussy version of a simple appetizer that can be done many ways. You could simple wrap juicy cantaloupe slices in salty prosciutto, or you could put them on skewers with prosciutto (or maybe salami slices instead) and chunks of a good mozzarella.
Cantaloupe jam with vanilla – A beautiful and delicious way to preserve this bounty.
Cantaloupe can also be used in smoothies, either fresh or frozen (just remember that with smoothies, you want at least one of the fruits you are using to be frozen for texture. I love to eat a quarter of cantaloupe with a big dollop of cottage cheese nestled in the space where the seeds were for breakfast. No bowl to wash!
Don’t forget, as we mentioned last week, that you can puree cantaloupe and/or watermelon to freeze as popsicles, especially with some whole berries or peach slices thrown in.
I am going to leave you with my husband’s favorite recipe for berry pie. This is traditionally done with blueberries (and you have enough in your box this week), but in my house we have made it with raspberries, blackberries and blueberries. Try a mix of raspberries and blueberries!
One tip: Don’t skip the homemade graham cracker crust. The store-bought kind just isn’t the same.
Summer berry pie
1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
3 tablespoons sugar
1/3 cup butter, melted
1 quart blueberries, blackberries or raspberries (if using raspberries, you will want about a half-pint to a pint extra for topping the finished pie)
1 cup sugar
3 tablespoons corn starch
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup water
1 tablespoon butter
Make the crust. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine graham crumbs and sugar in a medium bowl. Stir in melted butter until blended.
Pack mixture into a 9-inch pie pan and press firmly to bottom and sides, bringing crumbs up to the rim in an even layer. Bake 8 minutes and allow to cool before filling.
Mix 1 cup berries, sugar, corn starch, salt and water in a saucepan over low heat. Cook until mixture thickens.
Allow to cool a bit, then add butter and the rest of the berries (If making with raspberries, hold off on adding your extra pint until the pie is assembled.).
Pour berry mixture into crust and chill for at least an hour before serving. If using raspberries, place extra berries on top of pie after filling. This pie will get better the longer it sits in the refrigerator, as the mixture thickens and soaks into the crust a little.
Serve with whipped cream.