A surprise is what I feel like when I open see the contents of my order from the Loft Market.  This is my second time getting veggies from the Loft Market.  The first time I got a combo bag, which means you get local vegitables and fruit (although the fruit might not be local but it is organic).  This time I got only the bag.  I wanted to see how many more vegitables I would get and we still recived fruit – apples. 

In today’s loft bag this is what I found:
apples, lettuce, winter radish, potatoes, golden beets, jerusalem artichoke, leeks, onions, carrots, winter squash (which I think is a buttercup squash – looks like the one I got last time).

I recognize 8 out of the 10 items and if it wasn’t for the first combo bag I got I would only recognize 6 of the 10 items.  The first week I had no help with what the food items where so I looked up images on the internet and found out that the pinky looking beets that were yellow inside where actually golden beets and that the winter squash was a buttercup squash. This week I actually got an email with the expected food items to come.  Thank goodness!!  

I still need to research winter radish.  I’ve never cooked with leeks before and I definately had to discover what jerusalem artichoke was.  It’s no ordinary artichoke.

What did I find?  Well, I found out that the jerusalem artichoke is kind of like a potatoe.  You can eat it raw, boil it and mash it, steam it, or boil in slice but be sure to add lemon so it doesn’t brown.  I tried it raw since I like raw potatoes.  It wasn’t that bad.  I read that it is also very healthy for you and you get more nutrients and minerals from it raw.  I also read that it can give you a bit of gas if you normally don’t eat it and start to eat a lot of it!  I only put a little bit in the soup! 

What did I make tonight from my loft bag (and previous loft bag)?  I made a potatoe leek soup that also has red pepper, carrots, brocolli, jerusalem artichokes, and garlic and milk and a few spices (last three not from the loft bag!).  How does it taste?  I don’t know yet, well I did a little taste test but I’m still waiting for it to heat all the way through.  So far it looks and smells good!  The real verdict will be what other people think. 

I do need to add that I made a great squash cassarole last week with the butter cup squash.  I also made baked golden raddish which was really great!  If you want to know about a recipe for them, just leave a comment and I will let you know or maybe when I have a bit more time I will blog about it. 

I’m excited to find new vegitables that are in the loft bag, that are local and that are in season.  Oh the freshness in the fall and soon to be winter!