I don’t know about you guys, but I just love summer so much. It’s definitely my favorite time of the year, and it’s going so fast! Per usual. I love summer because it’s sunny, it’s warm (okay, in KC it’s freaking HOT), but occasionally I might get to hang out next to a body of water, such as a lake or a pool, and I really dig that. Most importantly, there is so much delicious and fresh produce to be had during this season!
One of my favorite new things that I’m doing this summer is participating in the Hen House CSA (community supported agriculture, AKA fresh and locally produced food). Every week I go to Hen House to pick up our bag, and I’m always excited to see all of the delicious food! Everyone participating in the program gets a weekly email letting them know what they can expect in the bag that week, as well as the farm/location it came from (for example, this past week our cucumbers came from Brad Hall Produce in Sibley, MO). I think it’s pretty cool knowing where your food came from, especially when it’s right around the corner!
This post is somewhat geared toward my fellow Kansas City friends, but many of you out-of-towners most likely have a CSA program near you that you could participate in, and the benefits are going to be the same! So keep reading, or go ahead and skip to the recipe. 😉
All photos shown throughout this post were made using some of my CSA food!
Disclosure: I have been provided with a free membership to the Hen House CSA program this summer in exchange for social promotion. All opinions expressed are my own. I would never endorse something that I don’t truly love or that doesn’t align with my values and vision for Wellness For The Win.
If you have already heard me talk about the details of Hen House’s CSA program on my Instagram stories and you’re not interested, you can totally skip past this part, but for those of you who might be thinking about joining, listen up!
CSA Details: What You Can Expect, Cost, Benefits and More
The CSA started on June 2nd and runs all the way until September 5th, but you can join in anytime. You get a new bag of goodies each week, and you can choose to pick it up from the location that is most convenient to you. You can also pick it up on either Wednesday or Saturday, depending on your preference. Weekends are when I like to grocery shop and meal plan, so I chose Saturdays.
The cost might be the best part. It’s only $10 to join, and then $25 per week! You get a variety of items every week, including a combination of the following: milk, eggs, meat, bread, tons of local produce and other various items (i.e. apricot jelly, locally made hand soap, etc.) — so trust me when I say that $25 is a great deal.
There are so many benefits of participating in a CSA, other than the low price. Since the food is locally produced, there is a shorter time from farm to table which means that it is likely going to be more nutritious. In addition, you are supporting your local farmers and it’s an opportunity to connect with others participating in your community. You and a neighbor or friend could both join and then swap recipe ideas based on the items you get each week!
Delicious, fresh bread, apricot jam and farm fresh eggs from the CSA. (below)
My favorite thing about participating in the CSA is the fact that it has totally pushed me out of my cooking comfort zone. I think we all have our “go-to” recipes and foods that we buy over and over, but when you get different items in your bag it inspires you to branch out and try some new things, which I have really loved!
My biggest adventure so far was roasting a whole chicken; something I have definitely never even considered doing, but I’m so glad I did! I made a yummy Asian-inspired salad using grilled cabbage, used beefsteak tomatoes on one of our flatbreads, and I’ve been making some amazing toast with the fresh bread every week. I’ve even whipped up fresh salsa a few times using the peppers, onions & tomatoes from the CSA! I also never buy kale (more of a spring mix/spinach gal), but I got kale in a couple of the bags, which ultimately led to these kale chips! I’m definitely going to start grabbing kale on a regular basis now. They are such a delicious snack!
If you’ve never had kale before, you might have the preconceived notion that it’s gross. Well, I’m here to tell you that it’s not, BUT how you prepare it definitely makes a difference. Kale chips are a very easy and delicious way to get these healthy greens in your (or your kid’s) diet!
This recipe is extremely simple, and you could probably find it on several other food blogs as well. Why not add another to the list? If you visit my site frequently — thank you — then it will be that much easier to access! And hopefully it will inspire you to try something new if you’ve never made these (or anything with kale) before. This recipe was inspired by the Kale Chips recipes on Gimme Some Oven and SkinnyTaste, a few of my favorite food blogs!
Roasted Parmesan Kale Chips
An easy, nutritious and delicious snack that the whole family will love!
- 1 bunch kale, washed and thoroughly dried
- Coarse sea salt (or whatever salt you prefer)
- 1.5 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1-2 Tbsp grated parmesan
- Preheat oven to 400 F.
- Line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper and spray with nonstick cooking spray.
- Wash kale and pat dry with a paper towel.
- Remove kale leaves from the stems and tear into bite-sized pieces using your hands.
- Place pieces in a large bowl and drizzle with the olive oil. Massage the kale using your hands until the pieces are evenly coated with oil.
- Transfer the kale pieces to the prepared baking sheet and lay them into an even layer, then sprinkle with sea salt.
- Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until kale is crunchy. (Different ovens cook differently, so I would check around 8-9 minutes and determine if they need more time or not.)
- Remove from oven, sprinkle with grated parmesan and serve immediately.
Please let me know if you have any questions about the CSA or if you end up joining! I’d love to swap recipe ideas with you. 🙂 Feel free to comment here, or DM me anytime on Instagram at @wellnessforthewin, and as always, tag me in your posts/stories if you make this recipe!
Have a great weekend!
#WellnessForTheWin #HenHouseCSA #KaleChips