CSA Love + Spring Onion Greens Kimchi

spring onions

I am a big believer in the concept of Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) programs. If you’re new to the idea, the gist is that you support a local farmer by giving them a lump sum of cash to help them through the lean months. That investment bears fruit during the growing season in the form of weekly or bi-weekly boxes of produce for you to take home and enjoy.

I’ve been a member of several different CSAs over the years and sadly, they always left me feeling like something was missing. Ideally, a CSA should be more than just an opportunity to streamline your grocery shopping, it should give you a sense of connection and appreciation for where your food is coming from. And it’s a bonus if they happen to know your name.

Happily, I can report that I am beyond delighted by my CSA this year. The farm is Down to Earth Harvest and it’s located in Kennett Square (one of my very favorite Philadelphia-region towns). The pick-up site is my local Saturday farmers’ market at Rittenhouse Square and the farm crew is totally friendly (hi Robert, Phil and Shanna!).

spring onion greens kimchi

A few weeks back, before the official start of the CSA season, I made my way to their table at the market and introduced myself. We got to talking and Robert asked me what I suggested they do with the glut of spring onions that were soon to be ready for picking. I offered a few ideas and they filled my arms with onions so that I could do a bit of testing. I tried pickling the white stems whole, but then turned bitter and woody (I now think they’d be better suited to a sliced pickle – live and learn).

My preserving mojo wasn’t entirely off though. I used this ramp greens kimchi recipe and turned the spring onion greens into some of the best, most flavorful, most interesting kimchi I’ve ever eaten. I took a jar over to the Down to Earth crew this last Saturday to try and once I assured them that they weren’t going to be painfully spicy, they were taken aback by how tasty those onion greens gotten (and here they’d been sending them into the compost bin).

I’m not going to re-write the recipe here, because other than switch one green for another, I really didn’t do anything different from what the Tigress did. I highly recommend this treatment if you’ve got a bunch of onion greens to use. I’ve started planning meals around this kimchi and I’m hoping to make another batch before the season is over.

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22 Responses to CSA Love + Spring Onion Greens Kimchi

  1. 1
    Kat says:

    Ooo! I love this idea! By the time I saw that ramp kimchi recipe, I was–alas–all out of ramps. However, I’m likely to get more green onions and try out this recipe.
    We’ve been with our CSA for three years, and you’re right–once you find the right one, there’s an intimacy, a sense of belonging and support all around.

  2. 2

    I’m so happy to hear this works well with spring onions! After hearing good reviews about Tart & Sweet from my trustworthy canners (you & Tigress), I picked it up. Then I spotted Tigress’ recipe and decided to go with her method. I used whole ramps, a few leftover spring onion greens and chives. I think it might have changed my whole mindset on what kimchi can be.

    PS I’m with you on finding a CSA you can connect with. Mine is becoming that way for me, slowly but surely.

  3. 3
    Livia says:

    I still have left about a half of the abundance of scallions I was tweeting about last week. I’ve been trimming off the greens (hoping for a good pickling recipe) and slicing them into eggs (fried, scrambled, and quiche) with pleasure.

  4. 4
    meg says:

    Yum! I’ve been wondering what to do with all my walla-walla onion greens. I pickled some of the young onions and the base of the stems (~2″ or so). I’ll follow you and the Tigress and kimchi the greens!

  5. 5
    Daedre says:

    I love the CSA model too! I would like to start one someday (maybe after I retire and can devote all my time to gardening).

  6. 6
    Kimberly says:

    I have been following your blog for some time and when I saw this post, I finally had to comment. I am also a HUGE lover of CSAs. This summer I am doing a weekly post on tips on using your CSA. My blog is at learntocookbadgergirl.com. Hope you will check it out and follow me too. :)

  7. 7
    Cat K. says:

    We signed up for our first CSA this year, and it’s a good thing we’re doing the biweekly share, because I could barely use up all the greens I got before the next box.

    BUT, I did decide to go the kimchi route with my bok choi–I combined a Dorris & Jilly recipe with a couple of others I found, and it’s in the pantry doing its thing right now. Can’t wait to see how it comes out.

    I feel there will be more spring onion greens in my future, so thanks for posting!

  8. 8
    Georgia says:

    Sounds Great!!! We joined a CSA for the first time this year. We are Weaver’s Way members, so opted to be a part of the Henry Got Crops CSA at Saul High School in Roxborough. My friend and I are doing a working share, so we man the pick up table (they do a market style pick up) for a couple of hours. It is such a great way to meet the community and the farmer! Can’t wait to see what we get. This week it was turnips, pea shoots, cucumbers, broccoli, kale, and arugula. Yum!

  9. 9

    I love this idea!! Kimchi can always add so much to a meal. Spring onions are a great meal topper as is, so being able to infuse them with a little extra flavor sounds wonderful to me. I’ve peeled sooo many spring onions during my days at the CSA…It’d be great to actually put all the 1000′s of them to good use.

  10. 10
    Wendy says:

    Just picked up my first CSA basket yesterday! Love my farmers and love my produce!

  11. 11
    Jenna says:

    This year I switched my CSA to someone new. I liked the last one–but didn’t feel that connection which is so important. I have high hopes for the new CSA I’m supporting because it has a smaller group and at times provides a better chance to get to know the farm/people you are supporting.

  12. 12

    Hmmmmmm, I guess I didn’t know that people don’t use the greens of onions. I use them just like chives or green onions. Who knew!?

    This was such a timely post for me. Our first farmer’s Market was today & it was overflowing with spring onions. I’ve never tried making kimchi before, but there’s a first time for everything!

  13. 13
    Cindys says:

    Don’t like traditional Kimchi with cabbage. I will have to try for a refrigerator munchy! Thanks Marissa

  14. 14
    abby says:

    This is my second year as a member of the Lancaster Farm Fresh Cooperative CSA and I heartily recommend it! They delivery all over the Philly region, down into MD/DC, Virginia, and New York!

  15. 15
    tigress says:

    so glad to see that you’ve made these marisa! what a great idea to use spring onion greens! :)

  16. 16
    mary w says:

    If it works with ramps and green onions, do you think it would work with kale or chard? DH is tired of all the ways I know to fix these greens. Maybe I could slip him a bit more as kimchi.

    No CSA for me. I grow most of my veggies in my backyard (hence, the overabundance of kale and chard).

    • 16.1
      Marisa says:

      I’ve never made kimchi with kale or chard. You should check out a copy of Wild Fermentation and see what Sandor Katz has to say. He’s the expert on all things fermentation.

  17. 17
    wes says:

    I DO have too many onion greens, so I just have to try this. I use them when I cook, and in salads, but the green onions in the garden are doing so well and one onion produces so many greens, but I hate to just compost them. Thanks for the idea.

  18. 18
    Sam says:

    This looks so good. Do you know if it will work with less salt or is it the salt that preserves it? I can’t have so much sodium.

  19. 19
    Robin says:

    I am really enjoying your blog. I just finished putting a batch of green onion top kimchi in jars – it smelled so good that I can hardly wait till it’s finished! Also, the Swiss chard in my garden has overwhelmed me, so I decided to try a batch of kimchi with the stems, which otherwise end up in my compost pile.

    Lastly, the recipe you posted for tomato jam was out of this world! It is now my favorite topping for burgers and a tiny dab on a sliver of aged Manchego cheese is out of this world.

    Thank you for sharing this great stuff!

  20. 20
    DK says:

    This kimchi is amazing. What more can I say?

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