CSA Week 11: Hurricane Preparedness Edition

By Amanda Marcotte
Saturday, August 27, 2011 12:46 EDT
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CSA Week 11CSA Week #11

I wanted to take a picture of the sign, as I've been doing, but some guy at the pick-up location must have been really bored, because the entire time I was there, he was erasing and rewriting parts of the sign.  He did this throughout the entire loading-up process, and I even waited around for a few minutes to see if he would wrap it up, before I realized he was probably never going to wrap it up.  If he's still there, erasing and rewriting, I wouldn't be surprised.



Heirloom tomato

Slicing tomatoes




Bell peppers



Cherry tomatoes





Feeling a little overwhelmed by the cucumbers—which I like, but tend to forget to eat—I went ahead and made quick refrigerator dill pickles.  I love pickles, so I knew I’d eat those.  In fact, I did eat most of them, but there are still a few on hand, which I bet I'll appreciate if we lose power. 

Dinner #1

Pasta with backe cherry tomato sauce and saladI had a ton of cherry tomatoes, so I made pasta with this baked cherry tomato sauce.  I didn’t make my own pasta, but I imagine at some point in my life, this will come up.  As the recipe I linked stated, this was unreasonably good.  I highly recommend trying it yourself while cherry tomatoes are cheap and abundant.  

I took some more cherry tomatoes and served them as a salad with the lettuce.  I made my own salad dressing by blending some sun-dried tomatoes, basil, garlic, and balsamic vinegar in my mini-chopper.


Dinner #2

I made eggplant and bean burger recipe, using black beans instead of white beans, and replacing the hummus with cornstarch and an egg.  I served it with regular sandwich bread, but some of the sun-dried tomato dressing, which had firmed into more of a spread, and a Jersey tomato and some lettuce.

Eggplant burgers plus beans & cornI still had some kidney beans and red wine from last week, so I repositioned them as a side dish, by taking some onions and corn, browning that a bit in a frying pan, adding the beans, a little veggie broth and chili powder.  Threw a few cut up cherry tomatoes in, and served it as a side.  Of this new mix, I had some leftovers, so I mixed it all up with some quinoa and used it as a side dish to go with lunches

Peaches and pudding for dessert.

Vegetarian, but Jamelle’s version of the burgers is vegan.  

Melon cocktail

I still had a melon, too, so I googled around and found a few variations on the melon + gin cocktail. So I pureed the melon into a juicy mess with ginger and pepper, added gin and ice, and had it for after-dinner cocktails.

Dinner #3

I had black beans left from the recipe before and lots of peaches, and googled around to see what I could do with them. As I suspected, there were many variations on the black-bean-and-peach combo—a sweet and spicy kind of thing—so I decided to put the black beans with the peaches, an onion, garlic, the bell peppers and the jalapenos into on big concoction that I served over rice.  I seasoned it with oregano, chili powder, and cumin.

Vegan. I forgot to get a picture, so I apologize.  It wasn't that interesting-looking anyway.


As you all probably know, I'm sitting in Brooklyn in the holding pattern, waiting for the hurricane to hit.  We're relatively unconcered about danger from the storm itself; we're out of the evacuation zones, and the evacuation orders appear to be based on a worst-case scenario, as opposed to the Category 1 or even mere tropical storm we're facing.  I'm worried about people in the area where it's hitting, but barring some miracle where it bounces back into the sea and gains more energy, I'm not too worried about New York.

That said, I'm fully prepared for the possibility of electricity loss.  This will make for an interesting approach to eating, and I'll do my best to document anything that we end up doing.  My feeling is that one can aim for some middle ground between having delicious food all the time because you have a fully functional kitchen and the sad food I'm seeing some people stock up on (energy bars?).  With that in mind, I'm trying to prepare some stuff that could go well with raw vegetables, like crackers and hummus.  I'm also making and freezing batches of beans, so that we can defrost and eat cold, perhaps with some veggies.  This website has some other ideas of food that keeps well that is better than trail mix and energy bars.  Hard-boiled eggs, for instance, are a good idea. 

One problem I see is that people tend to over-refrigerate, and there's a lot of food that doesn't need it, or at least doesn't need it if you're going to eat it within a day or two of purchase. Many vegetables don't need to be refrigerated at all times, and the assumption that they do causes me to wonder how people think our ancestors ever ate vegetables at all. I refrigerate a lot of stuff only because I'm not using it for 3, 4, or 5 days, but some stuff, like tomatoes or onions, shouldn't really be refrigerated at all.  In fact, most uncut fruit could probably fit into that category.  I recommend getting yourself some basics, like crackers or some other form of dried out bread, some stuff that can be stored without refrigeration, and of course, canned or frozen beans or hard-boiled eggs to eat with it.  I'm guessing, as well, that it's better to have stuff that takes time eat, because with all the juice out, you're going to be bored.  

What are your tips for eating reasonably well during a power outage?

Amanda Marcotte
Amanda Marcotte
Amanda Marcotte is a freelance journalist born and bred in Texas, but now living in the writer reserve of Brooklyn. She focuses on feminism, national politics, and pop culture, with the order shifting depending on her mood and the state of the nation.
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