Pizza with Tomato, Prosciutto, and Greens


This pizza was amazing. I got the recipe from my CSA (Farm Box LA) newsletter.


  • pizza dough (homemade or store bought – I used Trader Joe’s brand for this)
  • cornmeal
  • olive oil
  • garlic (1-2 cloves)
  • salt (optional)
  • 2-3 medium tomatoes
  • fresh oregano (optional)
  • fresh mozzarella cheese
  • 4 slices prosciutto
  • greens of your choice (e.g. chard, kale)


First a note on quantity.  A tub of fresh mozzarella balls (get the medium or large sized, not the tiny ones), a 4 oz package of prosciutto, and a bunch of greens will be enough for two pizzas.  So make two pizzas! Double the very approximate quantities listed above.

1) Preheat oven to 450 (preferably with a pizza stone in the oven but ok if you don’t have one).

2) Cut or tear the greens and add them to a baking sheet, tossed with olive oil and salt.  Put in oven for 10 minutes, until they’re a little brown and dried out, but not completely dry (i.e. not as dry as kale chips). Remove from oven and set aside.

3) Roll out pizza dough and stretch it to a roundish shape.  Sprinkle cornmeal on a pizza peel or a baking pan.  Transfer the dough to the peel or pan and adjust shape.  Brush some olive oil on the dough.  Add chopped garlic and brush it around to make sure all the garlic’s not in one place.  Then – my secret pizza technique – sprinkle a little kosher salt on the dough, especially the outer edges that won’t be covered with toppings.  Slide the dough onto your pizza stone or put the pan into the oven and bake for 4 minutes.

4) Slice your tomatoes.  After the dough has baked for 4 minutes, add the tomatoes.  The tomatoes don’t have to cover the whole pizza – just make sure there’s tomato in each bite. Bake for 10 minutes.

5) Slice the mozzarella balls.  After the pizza has baked for 10 minutes, add the mozzarella balls and bake for 5 more minutes until the crust is nicely brown. Remove from oven.

6)  Slice prosciutto into thin strips.  Scatter the prosciutto strips over the pizza and then scatter the greens over the top.




CSA – Yes or No?

I’ve said in earlier posts that I joined a CSA (Community Sponsored Agriculture). I get a farm box with fresh fruits and vegetables delivered to my doorstep every Sunday. Now that I’ve been a member for a while, I can talk about the pros and cons. Some of the novelty has worn off. So in case you’re considering it, here’s my list:


– The produce is all in-season, locally sourced and sustainably grown.

– Grocery shopping is fast and easy, since I’m building meals around my farm box produce.

– I try fruits and vegetables that I wouldn’t otherwise try. Mulberries, cherimoyas, guavas, fava beans are recent examples.

– I eat more produce than I ordinarily would.

– It gets delivered to me every week, so even I don’t have the chance to go grocery shopping I can generally make a meal out of my produce and staples around the house (e.g. eggs).

– It’s fun to see what surprise I’m going to get.

– It forces me to be a more creative cook.


– Since the produce is all in-season, you get the same thing for weeks in a row. Enough with the beets – really! And I don’t care if it’s cone cabbage, Napa cabbage, or regular cabbage — there just not that many things to do with cabbage! They try to change it up by giving me a different variety of kale every week but it’s still kale every week.

– It’s more work to plan meals around the produce I’ve received rather than picking my go-to recipes and shopping accordingly.

– It’s a little pricey, although for me it’s worth it not to have to make an extra stop at the farmers’ market.

– Sometimes we don’t eat the produce fast enough and it goes to waste.

– Although the produce is very good, it’s not amazing. I used to buy my produce at Whole Foods or the farmers’ market and my farm box produce is equivalent. Once I added eggs to my farm box and they tasted just like the brown eggs that I buy at Trader Joe’s.

– Some of the produce is weird or too fussy. What’s the point of a baby artichoke? Too much work for too little yield. And once I got flowering rapini which I thought was going to be like broccoli rabe but it wasn’t. Watermelon radishes are gorgeous but kind of bitter. And I’m just not into guavas – way too many seeds.

– Sometimes this happens:


Turnips? Beets? Watermelon radishes? You tell me what these things are!

So stay with the CSA or quit? I think I’ll stay for now, at least through summer fruit season. Then the jury’s out.

Good Enough Gourmet Joins a CSA, Part 2: Obsession

IMG_2806 IMG_2811

So I’ve been obsessed by my CSA.  As I said in my last post, my first delivery came on a Sunday and I panicked a little, wondering what I was going to do with all that produce.  Sunday is my meal planning day so receiving the produce, planning my menu, and shopping in half a day was stressful.  Then I got smart.  The CSA posts what’s going to be in the boxes on the Wednesday prior.  So first thing Wednesday, I check online and then proceed to check every, uh, two or three minutes until it was posted.  Once it was posted, I copied the list onto paper, separating the list into fruits, vegetables to be used in a main course, and vegetables to be used as a side dish.  And then spent pretty much every minute thinking about what to make with these ingredients.  It was like being on the TV show Chopped or Master Chef, where you get a basket of ingredients and have to use them all.  Seriously, I’d be sitting in meetings at work thinking, “swiss chard and parsnips, hmm.”

Later that day, I received an email with the contents of the farm box.  It was different from what was posted in my online shopping cart earlier!  Help!  How can I make the Salade Nicoise I was planning without green beans?  Which list was right?  So I called the CSA…..and didn’t get a call back.  They probably have me on a “do not call” list for being a crazy lady.  (About a week later they did call me back and apologized profusely for temporarily misplacing my message and said that I could call as often as I wanted.)  So I changed my whole menu plan based on the new list, and lo and behold, when I received the basket, the first list was right and I got my green beans, but too late to make the Salade Nicoise.

My obsession is the antithesis of what getting a Farm Box is all about.  It’s about working with what’s fresh and in season, being flexible, rather than constructing rigid meal plans.  However, I’m a full-time working mom and weekends are my only time to grocery shop.  If I don’t plan out our meals in advance, we don’t eat.  So I’m ok with my obsession. Plus, it’s like a game, figuring out how to use every piece of produce.  Here’s what we had in CSA week 2:

  • Roast chicken with roasted purple potatoes and heirloom carrots
  • Chicken caesar salad and citrus salad with tarragon
  • Butternut squash soup and artichokes with garlic aoili
  • Omelets with tarragon, shallots and goat cheese; roasted beets, and sauteed beet greens
  • Quiche with swiss chard, broccoli, and zucchini
  • Risotto with green beans and heirloom carrots; green saladIMG_2812



The Good Enough Gourmet Joins A CSA

Rhymes. Nice.

CSA stands for Community-Sponsored Agriculture, and by joining I get a box of fruits and vegetables delivered to my doorstep every week, sourced from local farms.

I’ve thought about joining a CSA in the past, but rejected the idea. I live within walking distance from a farmers’ market; CSAs can be expensive; and most importantly, I’m big on meal planning and thought it would be too complicated to work around what’s in my farm box. But when a friend posted a picture of her farm box on Facebook, I decided to give it a try.

My first delivery came on Sunday. I was excited when I unpacked, and then……mild panic attack. What was I going to make this week with all this random produce? After much scouring of my recipes, the internet, and my cooking muscle memory, along with a few deep, cleansing breaths, I made a plan. And went shopping, delighted with how little I had to buy (which would have been much less if it weren’t Trader Joe’s holiday specialty item season – hello dark chocolate star cookies and white chocolate peppermint bark-coated pretzel slims).

Here’s what I’m making this week:
1) lentil soup (uses the leek, carrots, and a bit of sweet potato) and salad (uses the baby mustard greens, carrots, tomatoes, and an avocado)
2) sausage and vegetable stew (uses the other leek, sweet potato, carrots, and parsnips)
3) roasted fish and salad with roasted heirloom beets and goat cheese (uses the baby mustard greens and the beets)
4) lamb burgers with sautéed beet greens and baked potato chips (uses the rosemary, the shallot, the lemon, the beet greens, and the potatoes)
5) rice and quinoa bowl with vegetables and tahini sauce (uses the shallot, the sweet potato, the kale, the carrots, and the other avocado)

You might think these vegetables sound boring, but when I say carrots, I’m talking tiny, colorful heirloom carrots that you don’t have to peel and are super sweet and have a more carrot-y flavor than other carrots you’ve had.

We’ll see how it goes. So far, I’ve made meal #1 and it was quite good. Pictures and possibly recipes to come.