New Love

Last week we received the first delivery from our new CSA (Community Sponsored Agriculture)–Britt Farms in Mt. Olive, NC. They don’t have a web site, but you can read about them here. We were attracted to this farm by the fact that it’s been family owned for several generations and is less concerned with the niceties of being organic than with getting us some good produce. (And we have no idea what happened to Snow Creek Organics, our CSA from last year.)

And good produce it is. Today we received spinach, radishes (gone), strawberries (nearly gone), two different types of lettuce, asparagus, and delight of delights, O’Henry white sweet potatoes. The radishes and strawberries were revelations. With the bland varieties we get in the store, I’d forgotten that radishes can have a bite and that strawberries can have amazing undertones of lemon and wine. What a great reminder of the glorious variety we can get in our vegetables.

The white sweet potatoes led me to make this interesting and delicious Mexican-inspired soup. I used tomatoes my mom grew and canned, which helps, but a high-quality store-bought version should yield good results.

White Sweet Potato Soup with Chipotle

Serves 2 as a main dish or 4 as a first course

1 onion, halved and sliced thin
1 tbsp. olive oil
3 -4 cloves garlic, minced
4 stalks celery, chopped
1 large white sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2″ cubes
1 1/2 – 2 cups good quality chicken stock
16 oz. high quality canned whole or crushed tomatoes, with juice
1 large dried chipotle pepper
1/2 tsp. coriander
Salt to taste
1/2 lb. elbow macaroni

Saute onion in olive oil over medium heat until translucent, adding a little chicken broth if it begins to brown. Add garlic, celery, and a few tablespoons broth. Saute over medium heat until celery is tender, about 10 minutes. Add remaining ingredients except macaroni and stir. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer about 15 – 20 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Add macaroni and stir. Increase heat to high and bring to boil again, stirring occasionally. Cover and reduce heat to medium low. Simmer until macaroni is cooked, about 10 minutes more. Correct seasonings and serve.

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