Watermelon arugula salad

  
So our CSA share started back up a couple of weeks ago and I have to say that it always delights me. It’s like getting a surprise each week–a box full of vegs, some that normally I wouldn’t seek out. It definitely stretches cooking creativity (just try searching “pac choi” and see what you get…nada!)

Yet, it also reminds me that fresh, local ingredients require NO work. The simpler the better. The boys loved this salad, which proves that if you expose kids early enough to unusual flavors, they’ll be open to trying just about anything, including food they don’t recognize (aka “green” foods are not the universal enemy).

Watermelon arugula salad

  • 1 bunch arugula (about 4c)
  • 3 c chopped seedless watermelon
  • 4 tbsp crumbled feta
  • 3 tbsp chopped mint
  • Drizzle of high quality balsamic vinegar

Layer ingredients. This is so easy I feel guilty calling it a recipe. Enjoy! 

Strawberry rhubarb swirl scones

  

Rhubarb is weird. It’s stringy, pungently sour and funny colored, I mean is magenta rhubarb sweeter than green? 

My mother-in-law was thrilled to unload a couple pounds of the stuff on me, and gosh darnit I got nostalgic remembering childhood desserts that appeared singularly in Spring. Someone always had rhubarb to give away. 

In fact, I ran into a woman at the grocery store who was distraught that she had to actually break down and buy it. She remembered fondly her grandmother’s rhubarb custard pie, but like many a hearty Minnesotan she couldn’t give me ingredients, she just “knew” how to do it. Hmmmmm. Evasively Suspicious. 

(For those of you unfamiliar with just how seriously we take our baked goods here, I have one thing to say: Minnesota State Fair ala Marjorie Johnson.)

In today’s vernacular what my dairy farm grandmother did in using what she had on hand is called “locally in season”. This recipe was inspired by that thinking.

The boys were skeptical that any amount of sugar would make mushy stringy celery taste good. Mixing it with strawberries and cream won them over. 

Maybe that’s cheating just a bit, but Grandma would have approved, and the cream certainly would have come straight from the  barn.

Strawberry rhubarb swirl scones

Make the swirl first by mixing 1c chopped strawberries with 1c rhubarb, 1/3c sugar and 2 tbsp lemon juice. Simmer til soft over low heat (about 10 min), mash until smooth. Cool. You can also use this as a topping for pound cake, ice cream, etc. 

Combine by hand:

  • 4c flour
  • 3/4c sugar
  • 2 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2tsp salt

Add in 2 2/3c heavy cream and 1/2tsp almond extract. Do not overmix, dough should barely hold together. Swirl in strawberry rhubarb mixture. Form into mounds (makes 12 hearty portions). Bake at 425 for 12 min–use parchment or these may stick to your cookie sheet.